*Chapter 1*: Chapter 1
Disclaimer: I don't own Harry Potter or Stargate.
I've read a fair amount of stories where characters get a 'do-over'. Most of my stories are attempts to re-write the originals by inserting a new factor. In this story Harry goes back in time. However, instead of attempting to be subtle... he pretty much says: Ah, Screw It!
This time round is for his enjoyment... as far as he is concerned at least. The universe doesn't totally agree.
The crossover doesn't fully take off until about fourth year.
"Ah, Mr. Potter, back again I see!"
"Huh? What?" Harry asked as he tried to look around blindly. Something was on his head; it felt heavy yet cloth-like. He reached up and lifted the blindfold… he froze at the sight before him.
It looked like the Great Hall of Hogwarts. Students seated at the long tables looking at him expectantly. But he knew these students, a glance at the Gryffindor table showed no sign of Ron but… a young Hermione… Hagrid like hair and all, then he noticed the few students standing directly in front of him, Ron and Zabini to name two. This was unusual as the last thing he remembered was falling asleep in a Hogwarts' bed having just defeated Voldemort… seven years in the future. Of course he had been dead an hour or two before that… but he was sure he got better.
"Oh god. What happened?" Harry mumbled. He dropped what he assumed was the Sorting Hat back over his eyes before raising it again to make sure he wasn't imagining it all.
"Mr. Potter, if we could continue?" Came the same voice.
"Indeed, I realise that it must be rather boring to go through it all again, but we shouldn't keep everyone waiting."
"Did I just dream the last seven years of my life?" Harry hissed angrily under the hat.
"Of course not. It rarely happens but you seem to have been given the opportunity to have a second go at making things right, Rowena Ravenclaw and Arthur Dunwall are the only two I know of personally. I'd advise you not to waste it, I have never heard of someone having a third chance." The Hat warned.
"So I'm not about to wake up and find that Tonks and Remus are dead?"
"Lord no!" The Hat laughed in his head. "In fact, if you use what you know then you stand a good chance of saving even young Mr. Diggory over there."
Harry quickly popped the brim of the hat up and suddenly felt a rush of hope and joy as he saw the former/future Hogwarts Champion staring back at him like everyone else.
"They can't hear us, right?"
"Did you ever hear me talking to any of the other students I sorted whilst you were here? I had a rather long discussion with your young friend, Miss Granger, on why she would do better in Ravenclaw than Gryffindor!"
"Then why didn't you put her there? She's always been the smartest."
"The same reason I put you in Gryffindor." The Hat returned smugly.
"Because she asked you to." Harry sighed.
"Indeed. So, Mr. Potter, would you care to trust my judgement this time round and enter the House of Slytherin? After all, you are the rightful Lord of Slytherin."
"By right of conquest, in this timeline you have defeated that young upstart, Riddle once. In your last timeline you did so nearly once a year! Magic will recognise you as such. Speaking for myself and Hogwarts, we definitely acknowledge your Lordship."
"Wait… I'm only eleven in this timeline, and only barely, aren't I too young?"
"Only by mortal human standards, and magic does not care one whit what mortal humans think. Neither do we for that matter. But we digress, shall you enter the pit of snakes?"
"Would it really make that much of a difference?"
"Mr. Potter… may I call you Harry?"
"I could help you sit here and go through the pros and cons of Slytherin versus Gryffindor, instead I shall give you the one piece of information that will be of most importance to you:
"Slytherins have their own private rooms."
"SLYTHERIN!" Boomed the Hat into the Great Hall.
Harry grinned and took off the hat and headed for the house of green and silver as his own uniform adopted the trim.
As he sat down to watch the rest of the sorting he noticed the room was absolutely silent and everybody was staring at him in shock.
"Headmaster, this is outrageous!" Snape said as he stood angrily.
"I must confess; I am at a loss, Severus." Dumbledore said quietly.
"Potter's just a half-blood! He doesn't belong in our great house!" Came the snotty voice of an eleven-year-old Draco Malfoy.
Harry was now beginning to remember why he fought so hard last time against Slytherin. He looked at the Hat only to see it chuckling on its stool.
"I demand he be resorted!" Snape said loudly causing a stir amongst the students and professors.
"Here! Here!" Came a chorus of agreement from around the room, but most notably from his new fellow Slytherins.
Harry had had enough. He wasn't going to be the meek little boy like last time. He had all the knowledge he needed, he knew their mistakes (even if they hadn't made them yet), but he also knew their histories.
"HEY!" Harry shouted causing the hall to fall silent and return its attention to him. "So, you think that because I am a half-blood I don't belong in Slytherin, right?"
"Exactly, you are a disgrace to the wizarding world." Malfoy snarled.
"So… that would mean that Professor Snape should be removed from Slytherin as well. He's a half-blood after all."
There was a rush of wind caused by every Slytherin head snapping to the staff table and Professor Snape. The look of betrayal was present on most, but not all, students in his house.
"POTTER!" Snape screamed. "Cease your lies!"
"What lies? Your mum was a witch, Eileen Prince. Your dad was a muggle, which I guess makes you even more of a half-blood than me. It's in the school records, Dumbledore can confirm it and so can probably most of the older professors." Harry shrugged with a grin. He was definitely enjoying himself.
"Why you insolent-"
"Professor Snape!" McGonagall snapped angrily, halting the greasy wizard's descent towards the Boy-Who-Lived.
Snape turned to Dumbledore. "Aren't you going to do something about this?" He demanded.
Albus Dumbledore was truly at a loss. Never in all his decades at the school, even as a pupil, had the Sorting been interrupted. "I'm afraid I don't see what I can do."
"Potter is clearly spreading lies and has no place in the noble house of Slytherin!"
Albus' head snapped round to glare at Snape. "I believe it would be in everyone's interest to let the matter drop." He said seriously. He refused to lie just to protect Severus' ego.
All heads snapped back to Harry. "He called me a liar. He also called me names. I demand sanctions!" Harry said as he banged his eleven-year-old fist on the table. He was actually enjoying himself. He hadn't felt this good since he took the luck potion.
"I'm sure it was just a misunderstanding." Albus said diplomatically.
"A 'misunderstanding'?" Harry laughed. "Sure, I'll accept that on two conditions, one, all the other professors agree that they can see how Severus calling me a liar was a 'misunderstanding', two he swears on his magic that it was a 'misunderstanding'."
"But to what end, Mr. Potter?" Dumbledore asked in his grandfatherly manner.
"Justice! My safety! Considering he was about to assault my person I think it is a pretty damned safe bet to say that he is not the best choice for being a professor."
"Language Mr. Potter!" Came the largely ignored verbal admonishment from Professor McGonagall.
"I'm afraid now is not the appropriate time to be discussing this." Albus said as he indicated the students, focused on every word and action.
"So, what? You want to give it a week? Wait until he's had a chance to really beat me into submission?"
"I was thinking that we could wait until after the feast." Albus laughed.
That one stumped Harry. "Oh… yeah, ok." Harry went to sit down and everyone sighed in relief… until he shot right back up again. "Just one cotton pickin' minute! What about these bigots?" He asked indicating his fellow Slytherins. "Aren't you going to punish them for what they said?"
"Again, Mr. Potter, perhaps after the feast?"
"Fine… but I expect detentions to be handed out!" Harry grumped.
The last surprise came for Harry when a shell-shocked Blaise Zabini eagerly hurried over to the Hufflepuff table instead of being sorted into Slytherin. Harry just shrugged; he was more interested in the fact that he was practically hairless. He kept going to scratch his stubble but when he came across his smooth pre-pubescent skin he would think about the other places he was supposed to have hair. It was fairly embarrassing.
Albus was trying to figure out what had gone wrong. He had left Harry with his mother's family in the hopes that he would not suffer an over-inflated ego from his fame. He knew full well that he would not be well received by Petunia and Vernon, but it was a sacrifice that had to be made.
Instead, Harry appeared far too well versed in the wizarding world's history and culture than he would expect for someone raised by people who even refused to say the word 'magic'. He wondered if perhaps Remus had not heeded his warnings and had been visiting the young lad over the years. He would have to check with Petunia and see.
Minerva was devastated that little Harry Potter was not one of her lions. She had been looking forward to this day for over eleven years ever since James placed his son in her arms and told her she was holding her next Quidditch star. That said; she was livid at Severus and the rest of his Slytherins and how they had received him. She was not happy about him staying in Slytherin.
As Dumbledore finished his post-feast speech Harry stood up. "Let's get to it then." He said as he walked up to the staff table.
"Of course, Harry. Let us adjourn to my office."
"What? Hell no! He-" Harry pointed viciously at Snape. "-insulted me in front of all these people. I want this done in front of all these people, seems only fair to me."
"Mr. Potter, this is hardly the plac-"
"It's the perfect place! Why? Are you afraid of the truth? If you have nothing to hide then do it here. I am perfectly willing to accept if I am wrong." Which was a complete and utter lie. Harry was a stubborn idiot at the best of times. He just didn't care as he knew the truth.
"I am afraid I must insist that we take this somewhere more private."
"Fine, then I am going to call an advocate from outside the school." Harry declared as he raised his nose in the air like a snotty little eleven year old. If he was going to have to go through puberty again he was damned well going to make the most of it.
"I'm afraid muggles are incapable of entering Hogwarts." Dumbledore said apologetically.
"Muggles? Why would I want a muggle? They wouldn't know anything about Hogwarts in the first place… well, unless I asked a muggleborn's parents I guess… but no, I will be asking for an official from the Ministry of Magic!" Harry declared triumphantly. "Possibly two." He considered as information from his past years at Hogwarts and the war came to mind.
Dumbledore saw this as an opportunity to find out who had been teaching Harry about the wizarding world. Hopefully it wasn't someone with ulterior motives that would see the prophecy come to a less than optimum resolution.
"Very well. Who do you wish to call?"
"Amelia Bones and Alastor Moody."
Harry was quite pleased to see Snape pale even further. Harry had remembered that Moody had it in for Snape last time and would love to have a chance to re-investigate him. Bones was the only person in the Ministry to actually give him a fair shake.
Albus managed to hide his own dismay. The last thing he wanted was Harry Potter in the same room with the Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement. There was no way Amelia Bones would simply accept his word of what happened without investigating herself. The first question out of her mouth was bound to be: 'Where have you been since that Halloween?'
"I am sure Madam Bones is far too busy-"
"I am a citizen of the British Magical World. A world she is duty bound to protect, I am sure she can make the time. Besides, it can't hurt to ask."
"Very well, I will go and ask her."
"Yeah, right!" Harry scoffed. "I am the one who will ask."
"Don't you trust me Mr. Potter?" Dumbledore asked slightly hurt, despite the fact that he had no intention of calling either Madam Bones or Alastor Moody.
"Give me one good reason."
"I am a well respected member of the Wizarding community."
"So am I, but you don't seem to trust me. Try again." Harry grinned.
Albus was becoming frustrated; the boy was far too savvy for a mere eleven year old. He would just have to let things play out and see what he could learn.
"Very well, Harry. Come along and you can make your call." Albus sighed.
"I think I will wait here until she arrives."
"But how will you call her?" Albus frowned.
"Perhaps Professors Sprout and McGonagall would be so kind as to escort Susan to the Floo so she can connect them." He smiled.
"You trust them but not me?"
"Professor McGonagall has already spoken up to defend me from physical harm from Snape, what have you done?"
"Perhaps, Albus, we should acquiesce to Mr. Potter's reasonable demands?" Professor Flitwick suggested in his squeaky yet wise voice. "I, for one, am appalled by what I saw here today. Lily would be furious and as one of her mentors, I feel infuriated on her behalf."
"Thank you Professor." Harry said respectfully.
"Typical Potters. Always getting their way." Snape spat.
"That would be another insult, Severus." Filius said sternly. "If you will excuse me, I believe I shall retrieve Madam Bones and Mr. Moody myself!" He declared before he angrily stomped over the table sending plates flying before heading out Great Hall doors.
Everyone watched in awe at the spectacle.
Harry felt great joy that the professors were sticking up for him this time round. He wondered just how much Dumbledore had hid from them last time around. He moved from around the table and picked up the Sorting Hat.
"Mr. Potter?" Professor McGonagall asked.
"I just wanted to talk to the Hat about some stuff he mentioned." Harry shrugged before he sat on the stool and placed the hat on his head again leaving the whole hall staring at him.
"Perhaps the brat has some sense after all and is begging to be resorted." Snape sneered.
"Shut up Severus!" Albus snapped angrily.
The students gasped as the Grandfatherly figure vanished in a moment of anger. Albus quickly collected himself.
"I apologise children." He said genially, his grandfatherly mien settling back in place.
Meanwhile Harry was having an interesting conversation.
"Did you know that me going into Slytherin was going to cause this much trouble?"
"Of course not! I knew that Mr. Malfoy was an arrogant brat but I had expected more from Albus. I was also disappointed that Minerva was not more aggressive in her defence of you." That Hat said disappointedly.
"Am I even going to be safe in Slytherin?"
"As safe as you were in Gryffindor." The Hat shrugged. "There are a lot more differences between yourself now and yourself the last time round. You will fly through your practical classes because you have seven years of experience. You are far more confident and have knowledge to hold over people like Severus.
"I am quite sad to say that the friendship you had with Mr. Weasley last time will not happen this time, it was quite distasteful sorting him after reading his head. I was tempted to put him in Slytherin just out of spite… or Ravenclaw, I would love to see the little tosser flounder amongst the brains of the school."
Harry sighed. "I suppose it is to be expected. He feared me when they suspected I was the Heir of Slytherin and he actually believed I put my name in the Goblet of Fire."
"This is a chance for you to make new friends and help them. Besides, if you actually wind up in the tournament again you could enjoy it this time."
"I suppose. What about Quirrell and the rest? Can't you tell the headmaster about it?"
"He already knows but refuses to do anything… wants to try and redeem the bastard."
"Fine, so I just have to try and reveal his little friend some other way." Harry considered.
"I might have a suggestion for that." The Hat offered. "Take up your father's mantle of pranking."
"Of course! Sirius! I have to get him out of Azkaban!" Harry said frantically.
"Slow down, Harry! There is little point going off half-cocked. I put you in Slytherin for a reason, use that cunning you tend to shy away from.
"Now, I believe Filius has returned with your requested advocates."
"Thanks, if I get the chance I'll try and visit at some point."
"That would be lovely, life is so boring sitting on the shelf." The Hat said wistfully.
Harry raised the brim of the hat to watch as an enraged Amelia Bones stormed up to the staff table with Flitwick hurrying behind her and Moody clumping along. He was pleased when she began whispering harshly with Dumbledore instead of shouting and bellowing for all to hear… like the Greasy Git.
Eventually she turned to Harry. "Mr. Potter, a pleasure to finally meet you. I am Amelia Bones and this is retired Auror Alastor Moody, you requested we come and be involved. Perhaps we could take this to a more private setting?"
"Sure, but I expect there to be sanctions for Malfoy at the very least." Harry shrugged as he slipped off the stool, still holding up the brim of the hat.
"Perhaps you should leave the hat?"
"Nah, he's finished the sorting, he said he gets bored so he can be my advisor."
"Why thank you Mr. Potter, that would be wonderful!" The Hat said cheerfully.
As Dumbledore led Amelia, Moody, Harry, Flitwick, Minerva and Severus to his office, Pomona Sprout was left to send the rest of the children to their dorms. It was the most exciting and eventful Welcoming Feast she had ever witnessed. She couldn't help but wonder what that meant for the rest of Harry's next seven years.
Once the prefects had cleared the students from the hall the betting began.
"One galleon on Snape getting fired tonight!" Poppy chirped happily as she slapped the large gold coin on the table.
Sinastra just scoffed. "There is no way that Dumbledore lets that happen. I've got a galleon that says when Snapey goes, Dumbledore follows soon after."
"By choice or by force?" Pomona asked.
"Force. Both are stubborn. The Board of Governors will kick them both out."
"I think Dumbledore's got just enough self-preservation instincts left to cut Snape loose." Vector argued. "I think Dumbledore will be the one to fire Snape."
"I have a galleon that says Potter is the one who gets Snape fired." Charity Babbage giggled.
"NO BET!" Came the collected response.
"Charity, that - as the Americans say - is a Sucker's Bet. We all saw what happened here today and we can all agree that young Mr. Potter will be a force of change in this school… a force neither Snape nor Dumbledore will approve of." Pomona pointed out.
"'E seemed so meek an' quiet when I took him his letter." Hagrid frowned.
"Took him his letter?" Poppy asked.
"Apparently 'e didn't respond to them. 'eadmaster Dumbledore asked me to go an' deliver one in person and take 'im to Diagon Alley."
"What about his guardians? Why didn't they take him?" Pomona asked.
"'Is guardians are muggle. They didn't even want him to come to 'Ogwarts. Poor little tyke was sleeping on a dirty floor whilst they all 'ad beds." Hagrid said in disgust.
"WHAT!" Came the collective outburst of horror.
"Why the devil wasn't Minerva sent? She deals with all the muggle raised student's inductions to the magical world." Pomona asked.
"Dunno, Dumbledore just asked me to go."
"If you will excuse me, I believe I should be joining the meeting with Mr. Potter." Poppy announced as she left the table. "Oh, and I have a galleon that says I'm the one who gets Albus and Severus fired." She added as she slapped another coin on the table.
"Mr. Potter, would you care to explain why you felt it was important for the Head of the DMLE to come out in the evening to deal with this?" Amelia asked as she sat down in a conjured chair.
Harry was sitting in a very large chair with the Sorting Hat on his lap, he looked so very small. "Because I fear for my safety and do not believe I should have to walk around looking over my shoulder constantly. You are also the only person I can think of that won't be intimidated by him." He said jabbing a thumb at Albus.
Albus looked highly offended… even more so when he realised everyone agreed with Harry… including Snape.
"Very well, please outline what occurred."
"Wouldn't it be much easier and quicker to observe Professor Flitwick's memories of the event in the Headmaster's Pensieve?" Harry asked innocently as Albus' eyes flew wide open.
"How do you know about that?"
"I have my ways." Harry shrugged. "OW!" Harry growled at the Hat as its mouth frowned at him having bit his hand. "I also know you have my dad's invisibility cloak, which I need back."
Albus really didn't feel comfortable handing that over. Harry was far too well informed and far too cocky. There was no telling what trouble the boy would get into.
"Perhaps when you are older." He said apologetically.
"Hmm, I see." Harry mused before turning to Amelia. "I would like to press charges against Albus Dumbledore for the theft of a family heirloom."
This had everyone's eyebrows shooting into the hairlines.
"This is highly unusual." Amelia remarked; she turned to Albus. "I would advise you hand the cloak over, Dumbledore. Mr. Potter is well within his rights, especially as you have essentially admitted to having it."
"I'd also like to have anything else of mine he is holding… and those charms removed from it and me."
"Charms?" Moody asked.
"I'm fairly certain those little trinkets are tied to me." Harry said pointing to a nearby table.
"They simply keep me informed of your health and safety, my boy." Albus reasoned.
"Which is an invasion of my privacy and-" Harry stopped as the door opened and Poppy Pomfrey entered.
"I just learnt some news from Hagrid and felt that I should attend… before this goes any further I would like a few moments alone with Mr. Potter as the school nurse."
Harry sighed. He knew where this was going. "Madam Bones might as well come too. You'll probably want to tell her what you find." He said as he stood and put the Hat back on his head, holding the brim up so he could see.
"I was having so much fun too." He thought morosely.
"Not to worry Harry, at the very least you will get justice for what happened to you and you won't have to go back to them." The Hat told him.
Back in the Headmaster's office Snape was his usual belligerent self.
"I can't believe you are giving into the brat's demands! He is clearly nothing more than a pampered little prince like his father."
"Shut your mouth Severus or I will shut it for you!" Filius snarled.
Snape was shocked at the vehemence the tiny charms master was showing. Filius Flitwick was generally a jovial person.
"I agree." Minerva scowled. "You have crossed a line today and as I have never supported your appointment due to your clear bias, lack of experience and juvenile attitude, I will personally be lobbying to have you fired!"
"Now, now, Minerva. You know as well as I do that all staff appointments are under my purview." Albus reasoned.
"Yes, Albus. But your appointment is under the purview of the Board of Governors. So in reality, all I need to do is have you removed so I can have Severus fired." She said sweetly.
"Minerva!" Albus said mournfully through the shock of betrayal. "Severus has my deepest trust. I assure you-"
"All that means is you are not trustworthy." Minerva said dismissively.
"We both watched you allow Severus to insult the young man and then do nothing as he moved to attack him." Filius growled angrily. "I for one will be asking Madam Bones to see if she can begin an investigation into Mr. Potter's accounts."
"Why on Earth would that be necessary?" Albus asked.
"If you can't be trusted with a young boy's health, what about his money, especially as you seemed inclined to deprive him of a family heirloom?"
"The cloak is far too precious and potentially dangerous to give to a rambunctious young man such as Mr. Potter."
"That is not your call. Additionally, I find your assessment of Mr. Potter to be highly lacking." Minerva responded.
Everyone turned to see an enraged Amelia Bones storm in with an equally peeved Poppy Pomfrey guiding a sombre Harry Potter carrying the Sorting Hat.
"I am launching a full investigation into the handling of Harry Potter's placement since October 31st 1981." She said as she angrily placed her fists on Dumbledore's desk and glared at the man.
Albus just sighed in resignation. "Is that really necessary? I can vouch for the people I placed him with… they were family."
"Congratulations, Albus. You have just put yourself at the top of my interrogation list as a co-conspirator." Amelia smiled evilly.
"I can also testify that I was watching the house for the entirety of the 1st of November 1981 and that I warned Mr. Dumbledore that these people were not appropriate." Minerva said with her head held high as she stared down her nose at Albus in disgust.
"Do what you must, Amelia." Dumbledore shrugged. He decided not to worry about it; he could protect himself if he needed to.
Amelia just snarled at the man.
Filius decided to try and move things along. "Perhaps we can deal with the more immediate concerns of Mr. Snape's actions. I can bring Mr. Potter to the Ministry tomorrow evening if necessary or you can visit yourself, Madam Bones."
Amelia gave a sharp nod and sat down in a conjured chair.
"I'm afraid there is nothing to talk about." Albus smiled genially. "Professor Snape is protected by blanket immunity."
"WHAT!" Came the outraged screams.
"It is necessary that he be able to maintain his cover as a spy, and sometimes that means being a little… rough."
"Is this why you allowed him to torment anyone not a Slytherin?" Minerva demanded.
"It is for the Greater Good, Minerva. Surely you can understand this?"
"No Albus, I can not! And I definitely don't support it." She shook her head sadly. "After this meeting I will be contacting the board about your actions."
"I believe Pomona and myself would appreciate being a part of that, Professor." Filius scowled at Albus.
"You have built yourself a house of cards and it is about to come tumbling down." Amelia warned.
"Excuse me, but what does this mean for Mr. Potter and his safety around… him?" Poppy asked pointing disgustedly at Snape and unable to bring herself to say his name.
"If what Mr. Dumbledore says is true then there is nothing I can do." Amelia sighed. "I might just petition to remove him and Susan from the school and have them home schooled or send them to the States or Australia. Canada might help them learn French and a second language is always good."
"You are free to remove your niece, but Mr. Potter is my charge and he will be remaining here."
"Harry, a word?" The Hat said quickly.
Harry quickly put the Hat back on his head. "So everything we wanted to achieve today is going to fail?"
"Of course not. There are two things you and I know that can help you. Now, here's what you will say…"
Eventually Harry removed the Hat with a huge smile. Albus began to worry what the Hat had told him.
"First of all, I am Lord Slytherin by Right of Conquest. This means I can select my own guardians and can control my estates… which, as Lord Slytherin, the last of the heirs of the Founders, includes Hogwarts and Hogsmede."
There were gasps of shock at this revelation.
"I need to remain a student and resident of the School in order to protect it. So I will be living here from now on. I actually own a castle! How cool is that?" Harry said in a manner that truly portrayed an excitable eleven-year-old.
"You will need to return to your Aunts home during the summer, Harry."
"Like hell, and to you it's either Mr. Potter or Lord Slytherin." Harry snapped angrily his mood switching faster than a captured Death Eater's loyalty.
"I must agree with Lord Slytherin." Amelia added. "Like hell! By the time I am finished with his 'family' they will be rotting in muggle prison… personally I am hoping to get them into Azkaban!"
"It's Mr. Potter or Harry to you!" Harry snapped at Amelia… before breaking out into a teasing smile.
Amelia was shocked at the boy but figured he must be riding high on excitement by now, it was good to see him having fun considering what she had just learnt about the last ten years of his life.
"Mr. Potter, as much as I would love to see you matriculate these halls-" Minerva had to stop as Harry raised a hand.
"What's 'matriculate'?" He asked innocently.
"Learn here." She explained with a kind smile, it was the kind of smile that Harry recalled with fondness, it was very rare to see Minerva McGonagall smile. "I fear it is too dangerous to leave you near Mr. Snape or Mr. Dumbledore."
"That's the beauty of my next two bits… although I don't agree with the first one." Harry smiled. "If Madam Bones and yourself could arrange an interview with the Daily Prophet we could seriously damage his reputation." Harry explained as he jerked a head at Albus. "Legally, as a Lord, he can't touch me. If he does the rest of the Lords out there would lynch him!"
"It's a good idea, Mr. Potter, but why do you not like it?" Filius asked.
Harry gave a nervous look at Poppy.
"Harry, I am quite capable of giving the information required without giving the details." Poppy assured him.
"What is the second thing you were going to mention, Harry?" Amelia asked, trying to redirect the conversation away from anything that would make Harry sad.
Harry grinned… it was not a pretty sight. "Did you know that Severus Snape owed my father a life debt?"
There was sharp intake of breath from the greasy haired git.
"Really? Whilst it is true that you would inherit the debt if left un-repaid, I don't see how that would help." Filius frowned.
"Yes, but what is also important to know is that there is a prophecy about me defeating Voldemort-" Harry rolled his eyes at the additional gasps. "-Severus Snape is the one who revealed the prophecy to Voldemort and brought-"
"Mr. Potter! You will say no more!" Albus said sternly as he rose from his chair and moved for his wand.
"Expelliramus!" Harry was quicker and the wand soared into his hand.
Albus was white as a sheet. "Harry-"
"Tut tut! Lord Slytherin." Harry said mockingly. The others just stood there, shocked that an eleven-year-old boy had managed to best the Great Albus Dumbledore.
"You must return my wand to me!"
"This isn't your wand." Harry shrugged before he snapped it.
"NOOOO!" Albus leapt forward but was sent flying back by five separate stunners where he hit the wall and slid to the ground in an unconscious heap.
Harry took his own wand and incinerated the remains of the wand that caused a small explosion of smoke. "And thus ends the legend of the Elder Wand." Harry said highly satisfied.
"Mr. Potter, the Elder Wand is a myth." Minerva admonished lightly.
"Nope, it was real. Dumbledore won it from Grindlewald." Harry shrugged.
"If that was the real Elder Wand, why would you destroy it?" Filius asked.
"Well, if Dumbledore could win it from Grindlewald and I could win it from Dumbledore, what's not to say that someone couldn't win it from me? This way the wand can't be used by someone bad… like Snape."
"Silence Snape!" Moody spoke up at last, he had had his wand out and trained on Snape ever since Albus drew his. "I wanna hear what you were saying before Albus lost the plot." He told Harry.
"Right… erm… where was I?" Harry muttered to himself.
"Severus owes you a life debt which you inherited and he led You-Know-Who to target you." Filius supplied.
"Right! Which means that he violated a magical contract and his life is forfeit."
"You mean to kill him?" Amelia asked worriedly. As a Lord there was little she could do to stop him, but she hated to think that this young boy would do such a thing.
Severus knew much about life debts having researched them when James Potter had saved his life. He had hoped that either Dumbledore had lied to him or that he could find a loophole to allow him to escape. Ignorance was the only hope he had. So long as Potter and his family didn't know or acknowledge the debt he would be safe. Now he knew he was screwed.
"No, not kill him, but his life is now mine. Severus Tobias Snape, I, Harry James Potter claim your life as payment for the life debt you violated."
Severus screamed in pain as he fell to the ground on his knees his fingers clawing at his throat as his breathing became restricted. A ring of red light shone around his neck. And then it stopped and Severus fell to the ground in a panting heap.
"Sweet Merlin! What just happened?" Minerva gasped.
"Magic acknowledged my claim." Harry smiled. "Severus Snape is now a slave of House Potter."
"Merlin!" Amelia whispered as they all stared at the prostrate Snape.
"That does seem rather fitting." Filius grinned wickedly. "He has simply exchanged one master for another. But are you sure you are up for the responsibility?"
"I'm just going to make him do his current job with some modifications… like not being a big meanie!"
"I would suggest you let us help you plan your commands for now, Mr. Potter." Filius suggested. "I would hate for there to be a loophole for him to exploit. He cannot harm you, but he can still harm others and his actions reflect on you."
"Legally, even more so. There hasn't been a slave binding in over half a century! I doubt the laws have changed. Fortunately you don't need to inform the Ministry so we can keep this quiet." Amelia told them, still slightly dazed.
"I hate to ask this, but could you remove the knowledge of this meeting from Dumbledore's mind? He'll only keep on bugging me about how I know about things like the prophecy, I could order Snape to protect me but it will become pretty obvious I now own him."
"I believe I have the closest authority to do this." Poppy said stepping forward. "He has knowledge of private information regarding one of my underage patients, this gives me the right to remove the information."
"How do you know about the prophecy, Mr. Potter?" Minerva asked.
Harry looked at the hat wide eyed.
"Oops." It shrugged.
Harry just scowled and quickly began to think.
"It's that scar, isn't it." Poppy said sadly. "I knew it was dangerous."
Harry fought the urge to sigh in relief. "Voldemort transferred some of his memories to me when he died." It was a near perfect solution… despite the groan of the hat.
"I must insist that this be kept confidential!" The Hat exclaimed. "The last thing Hogwarts or myself wants is for Lord Slytherin to wind up as an experiment in the Department of Mysteries."
"I believe we can all agree to that." Amelia nodded slowly. "Of course this means that we can't use any of the knowledge that Mr. Potter possesses, like who the real Death Eaters are."
Harry shuddered. "They all are. You can't take the Mark unless you want it."
"Damn." She muttered. "See, now we don't have any chance of using that knowledge."
"You need to find a low level Death Eater, someone who isn't on Fudge's list of benefactors and wait for them to commit a crime." Filius suggested. "Then question them with Veritiserum and use the knowledge to reopen all the cases."
"I suppose catching Lucius Malfoy would be improbable." Minerva sighed.
"Catching him is easy, holding him is the problem. Fudge keeps bailing him out." Amelia said.
"These are all things we can discuss later. It is getting late, Severus has been neutralised but he still needs instructions." Poppy interrupted as she noticed Harry yawning.
"We also need to deal with Albus." Filius added.
"I was just going to have Snape continue as before but make sure he ensures the safety and education of his students. Also make sure he doesn't tell anyone our secrets." Harry explained.
"That would be best, but what about Albus?" Amelia asked repeated Filius' concern.
"We could just erase the whole meeting and make him believe he won the argument." Harry suggested.
"And his wand?" Filius asked with a small smile as he indicated the burnt ashes.
"Erm… he's so powerful he accidentally exploded his own wand?" He offered lamely.
"That actually might work." Poppy smiled causing everyone to look at her as if she was crazy. "It is a legitimate problem for exceptionally powerful people or people who don't take proper care of their wands." She explained.
"In that case, we will remove Albus to the Hospital Wing and wipe his memory of the event, we can then tell him that his wand exploded throwing him against the wall and he hit his head… hence the memory loss." Amelia decided.
"Snape, bring Albus and follow us." Harry ordered.
An extremely angry Severus Snape rose from the floor and obeyed. It was obvious he was not enjoying himself or operating under his own will.
"Students, assemble in the common room!"
Hearing the call from their Head of House the Slytherins quickly made their way. Usually Professor Snape didn't bother with addressing the students until the morning where he gave a short sharp speech that amounted to: "If you give me more work I will have you licking my potions classroom clean!"
"First of all, Mr. Malfoy, because of your outburst regarding Mr. Potter's sorting and heritage, you will serve two day's detentions with Professor McGonagall.
"Secondly, there will be no further bullying, intimidation or anything that resembles less than civilised behaviour towards Mr. Potter or anyone else not a Pureblood or Slytherin.
"Thirdly, anyone failing to do so will serve detentions with Mr. Hagrid cleaning up the dung from the Hippogriff herd… with their bare hands. Further infractions will lead to eventual expulsion.
"That is all. I will see you in the morning."
With that Severus Snape turned and exited the Slytherin common room leaving Harry Potter to face the horde alone.
Harry now realised that he missed a step in his instructions to his slave.
"You wait till my father hears about this!" Draco snarled snottily. "Half-bloods in Slytherin… it's an outrage and the Malfoy family won't stand for it!"
"Shut up Draco." Harry sighed. "If you have a problem, you deal with it, or aren't you man enough to handle little old me?" Harry asked innocently.
Draco bristled, his hand snapping to his wand but not drawing it. It was so quick it made Harry wonder why it seemed so natural considering students didn't get their wands till they were eleven.
"Perhaps you would like to duel, Potter?" He spat.
"Not really." Harry shrugged. Draco looked ready to crow in triumph but Harry went on. "But if that's what it takes then I'm game. After we set some conditions and stakes."
Draco looked a little worried. "Like what?"
"Well, the duel should be public… either outside or in the Great Hall. Also, the loser of the duel will leave the school." Harry was too tired to think up anything too clever, he didn't really want Draco around but he knew that he was pushing it.
Draco on the other hand was pissing his pants mentally. Those were some very high stakes, leaving the school meant attending another school in another country. He was fairly certain he could wipe the floor with Potter but it still was a big risk.
Suddenly he had an idea on how to get out of this. "You're not worth the hassle, Potter."
"Strange, Voldemort thought I was."
There were gasps and screams as Harry uttered the most feared named.
"What a bunch of losers." Harry rolled his eyes. "The idiot got himself killed by a baby and you lot are afraid of his name? Are you really telling me you are afraid of a baby?" He challenged Draco.
"Of course not!" Draco said indignantly.
"Show some respect, boy." An older boy sneered. "The Dark Lord was the Greatest Wizard alive!"
"Again… he got defeated by a baby… a baby who probably had a limited vocabulary and definitely no wand."
"B-b-but he killed all those p-p-people!" A second year girl stuttered fearfully.
"Did he? How often was Voldemort- shut up! How often was the idiot actually sighted? The way I hear it people were found the next day with the Dark Mark over their homes… all the battles that were recorded where with the Death Eaters… sounds more like he was too afraid to handle adults, when the opportunity came along to kill a baby he managed to screw that up as well!"
"You lie!" Scowled a prefect.
"We have back issues of the Prophet in the school… check them out. Not very cunning or ambitious to follow a weak, incompetent scaredy cat." Harry grinned.
"Watch your tongue Potter or I might challenge you to a duel myself!" Warned the prefect.
Harry just shrugged. "Fine by me, but you might want to reconsider. It's a lose-lose situation for you."
"Is that a threat Potter?" He demanded his hand going for his wand.
"If you beat me, you will be mocked and no one will respect you for challenging a firstie who hasn't even had a lesson yet. If I beat you, you will be shamed beyond belief for being beaten by a firstie who hasn't even had a lesson yet." Harry yawned. "'Scuse me all, been a long day. Time for bed." Harry walked past them leaving them standing there slightly confused.
"Crap… where's my room." Harry wondered.
"Psst… this way My Lord." Came a deep and foreboding whisper.
At the end of the hallway was the Bloody Baron.
"Did you just say 'psst'?" Harry asked incredulously.
"Quickly!" The ghost hissed.
Harry shrugged and followed his spectral guide. The Bloody Baron led him up a long flight of circular stairs much like the ones that led to the Headmaster's office. At the top was a portrait of a large cobra, coiled, resting in the shade of a tree in the midday sun.
"The Lord of Slytherin is not available, turn back hatchling." The snake hissed.
"Erm… I am the Lord of Slytherin by Right of Conquest." Harry offered.
"A speaker!" The snake's head rose up in surprise. It tilted its head as though listening. "Ah yes, the Great Mother acknowledges your claim, hatchling. Welcome home."
The snake lowered back to its resting state and the portrait swung open.
Severus Snape was furious! He refused to accept his enslavement and vowed to himself that he would find a way to break it. He had even drawn his wand to make a magical oath… but found he couldn't.
First it was The Dark Lord, then Dumbledore and now, worst of all, Potter was his master. It would not stand and he would see the boy dead at his feet by his hands.
He spent the better part of the night trying to concoct potions and poisons to use on the boy but his body just would not comply, it would stand there impassively as he raged impotently in his mind.
Eventually he decided to retire for the night and approach his dilemma in the morning with a fresh mind. Infuriatingly his body was once again under his control… until he decided to plot his revenge.
*Chapter 2*: Chapter 2
Albus Dumbledore was thrust, unceremoniously, into the waking world. He had no idea where he was, the last thing he remembered was having to have a meeting with his Heads of House and Potter, Bones and Moody. After that… nothing.
Looking around blearily he saw Madam Pomfrey had just thrown open the curtains causing sunlight to pour in and result in his awakening.
"Poppy? Why am I in the Hospital Wing?" He asked.
"You don't remember?" She asked worriedly.
"I seem to be missing a rather large section of memory… nothing since the end of the feast last night." He frowned.
"I'm not surprised really, you hit your head fairly hard." She admonished.
"Did I fall?" He asked, although it was more of a verbal wondering.
"Of course not, no, you managed to over power and explode your wand… you're lucky you still have most of your fingers!" She wagged a finger of her own at him.
Albus quickly looked at his hand and saw that the index and middle finger where missing off his right hand. "By Merlin… what happened?"
"I thought we covered that, Albus, your wand exploded." Poppy began running her wand over him. "Are you experiencing short term memory problems? Are you focusing properly?"
"What? Of course I am." He said angrily. "Wait… my wand?" His face paled.
"Complete ashes, I'm afraid you will have to see Ollivander about a new one." She said absently. "Now, if you will excuse me, I need to get the Wing ready for the day."
Poppy hid a smirk as she bustled away. She hadn't lied, as his wand had exploded slightly when Harry destroyed it. He was lucky to have most of his fingers as Moody and Filius were arguing over how many they should blast off and who got to do it.
Albus was not really focused on his fingers. Granted it was a huge loss, but his real worry was his loss of the Elder Wand. He felt that he needed all the help he could get as he knew Voldemort would return.
But then he realised something… he had overpowered the Elder Wand… he must be incredibly powerful. He doubted that Tom Riddle could do such a thing, even after all his power enhancing rituals. Potter may have to be the one to deliver the killing blow but it would be Albus Dumbledore who beat him into submission!
Harry sat down at the Slytherin table the next morning still trying to figure things out. The Bloody Baron hadn't given him any information but simply led him to what turned out to be Salazar Slytherin's old chambers. The Baron had stated that if he was to be the new Lord he would live and act like one. Then he had left. Harry had been too tired to care and just flopped down on the bed and nodded off in his clothes.
This morning he had discovered just how weak his body was after ten years of neglect and abuse by the Dursleys. His seven years in Hogwarts had allowed him to repair some of the damage but his little eleven-year-old body was barely functioning. He had headed straight to Madam Pomfrey who gave him some potions, which helped make him a little stronger for the day. She had warned him that he needed to exercise and eat right so he could stop using them.
All around him the students of all houses where whispering and pointing at him. The Boy-Who-Lived was a Slytherin. It was the biggest scandal of the century.
He could see Snape eating sullenly at the staff table. The Hat had been quite clear about what the bond entailed, there was nothing he could do to harm Harry or even his reputation on his own. He had only the freedoms his master allowed him.
There was a sudden commotion at the entrance to the hall as Draco and several other Slytherins marched in and headed straight up to Snape.
"Professor Snape, we demand Harry Potter be expelled. He has dishonoured the House of Slytherin, he entered our Lord's chambers." Said the eldest boy pompously.
Snape was desperately trying to do something to make this possibility real but before he could do anything Professor Flitwick intervened.
"Before we investigate your claims, are you aware of the bylaws of Hogwarts regarding such accusations?" He asked calmly, but there was a hint of annoyance in his eyes.
"We know that if he breaks certain bylaws he can be expelled."
"But are you aware that if your accusations are proved unfounded and the accused wins, you will suffer the punishments demanded by yourselves? In other words, you could be expelled."
"My father would never allow that." Malfoy said dismissively.
"Your father would have no say in the matter." Severus said, in his mind he was seething at his traitorous body. This was not happening to him and he would end it… somehow.
"Professor Snape is quite correct, Mister Malfoy. Hogwarts herself would deny you entrance; the bylaws are a part of her wards." Flitwick agreed.
"I believe what my colleagues are trying to say is, are you sure you wish to carry on with your current course? Especially as you will be expelled if you fail." Minerva explained.
"But he disgraced Slytherin and violated the sanctity of his chambers!" One girl said passionately. "How could he possibly get away with that?"
"The solution is obvious if you would just use your brains!" Snape snapped. That was actually his own willing contribution.
"But only Lord Slytherin can enter…" The prefect trailed off.
"Ah, I see the penny has dropped." Filius smirked.
Snape was fed up with this. "How many of you have approached the cobra portrait? How many have been allowed entrance? How many do you think have tried to force their way in? Only one student in the past century has gained access other than Potter, that student could speak to the cobra and it granted him access because he was the Lord of Slytherin. Now cease this foolishness and return to your morning meal." He dismissed them angrily before turning to his bacon and eggs.
The older students paled and began to move off, one of the prefects had to grab Draco before he could continue his protest.
Back at the Slytherin table the other first years and those that had not participated were staring at Harry.
"What?" He asked uncomfortably.
"Are you really the new Lord Slytherin?" Daphne Greengrass asked.
"Apparently." Harry shrugged unconcerned.
Tracey Davis was white as a ghost like most of her classmates. "But… that means…you…"
"Means what?" Harry asked with a raised eyebrow.
"You're related to You-Know-Who!" Pansy Parkinson hissed.
"You know! You-Know-Who!"
"I don't know who. Last I checked I was related to the Potters… hence my name." Harry said as he put another spoon of porridge in his mouth.
"She's talking about He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named." Daphne explained.
"If he can't be named then how am I supposed to know who she's talking about?" Harry frowned. He was really enjoying himself.
"Who? No! V-V-V-V-"
"She means Voldemort!" Came the highly irritated voice of Professor Snape.
The Great Hall was filled with screams and gasps with some people actually diving under the tables and running out the doors.
"Thank you Severus, for that." McGonagall said dryly she said as she stood to go and corral the frightened children.
Harry smirked quietly at the chaos before turning back to his classmates. "I'm not related to Voldemort and stop gasping, he's gone, pitiful excuse for a human that he is."
"If you are not related then how are you the new Lord of Slytherin?" Marcus Flint asked.
"Easy, I kicked his butt as a baby, and now, by Right of Conquest, Magic recognises me as the new Lord Slytherin."
"Hmph, so I just have to defeat you and I will be the new Lord of Slytherin!" Malfoy grinned.
"Mister Malfoy, you do not have the authority to initiate such a duel, only a Head of House may make such a challenge." Snape said as he handed out the timetables.
"Then how did Potter do it?"
"Isn't it obvious? I thought everybody knew what happened that night." Harry rolled his eyes. "First he killed my father, that made my mother the Head of House. Then he killed my mother, making me the Head of House. Then I destroyed him, making me the new Lord of Slytherin." Harry looked at Draco with a curious smile. "Would you like me to inform your father that you wish to challenge him for the Headship of your house?"
At this point Severus Snape once again found himself a passenger in his own body as it betrayed him. "Actually, all Death Eaters entered their houses into a Vassal arrangement with the Dark Lord in his role as Lord Slytherin. Mister Potter has inherited those arrangements."
Everyone including Harry looked at Snape in surprise.
"Wow! I really need to go speak with the Hat some more." Harry muttered.
There were two lessons on his first day that Harry enjoyed. Potions… because he could see Snape seething in his head whilst his body provided a lesson on safety and brewing that surpassed all previous lessons… by any potions professor… ever.
The other was Transfiguration.
Harry made it to class with time to spare. As with his first time as a firstie the Professor was sitting on her desk as a cat. Seeing as they were nearly all there… barring Ron who still managed to be late… Harry decided to have more fun.
"Well my fellow students. It seems that we are currently without a teacher." He smiled as he walked up to the front of the class.
The cat watched him curiously.
"But, I actually know some transfiguration!" He beamed a Lockhart grin. "First of all we need an object as this will be transfiguration and not conjuration. Everybody take out your Transfiguration text book."
There were wary looks between the students.
"Come on, come on! No dilly-dallying! We don't have all day. Get out your books." He ordered as he gave his best impression of a teacher.
Eventually everyone had them ready.
"Excellent now the incantation is 'Continenfors'. This will be cast at our books turning them into a bowl. The important things to remember are to imagine what the bowl will look like and to be firm in your incantation. Remember, this is your magic, your wand and your book. You own them all and they will obey you. So be forceful without being violent. Like so:
The class watched in amazement as the boy-who-lived-and-had-never-had-a-lesson-before turned his book into a simple metal bowl approximately fifty centimetres in diameter.
"Go on then, give it a shot. Weasley, get in and sit down. You're late." Harry snapped at the tardy boy.
He was so believable as a teacher that Ron didn't even question being taken to task by another student.
"Come on, remember, its 'Continenfors'." Harry instructed.
All around the room students started incanting. This went on for several minutes. Harry absently began stroking the cat.
The cat gave a sudden squawk as Harry picked it up and cradled it whilst still stroking it. He began walking around the room whilst giving advice. Quite a few students had managed to get the book to take the shape of the bowl but none had managed to get it to be metal or solid. They were simply bowl shaped books.
"Ok! Wands down everybody." Harry instructed. "I said wands down!" He said with a slight snap. "Now then, some of you had a good start and some of you got nowhere. Let's start with those first.
"Seamus, you didn't get any change. Explain to me how you tried to cast the spell. What did you say?"
"Ah' said 'Continenfors'." The boy scowled in his thick Irish brogue.
"Excellent. Now, what were you thinking of?" Harry asked.
"Making ah' bowl." There was something about Seamus' body language that made him look guilty.
"Really?" Harry asked sceptically. "Was there anything else going through your mind?"
"No." He said petulantly.
"If you aren't honest then I can't help you, you will forever fail because of it. You won't lose points or marks for telling me what was going through your mind, but I need to know before I can help you succeed."
Seamus huffed. "I was thinking about filling tha' bowl wi' rum, ok?" He snapped.
Harry tried to smother a smile. "How many of you were thinking about uses for the bowl you were going to make?" Harry asked the class.
A few hands went up.
"An important rule for casting is that your mind must be focused on the task at hand. If you are trying to transfigure a book to a bowl and are thinking about chicken dinner you are more likely to wind up with a chicken shaped book! Your sole focus should be the bowl. Its look, its feel. All of you; try again."
The classroom was again filled with sound of young voices incanting.
The results were much better this time. A lot of the bowls were nearly wooden but a few had a nice metallic finish.
"Wands down!" Harry instructed. "An excellent improvement." Harry praised them. "I suggest that you practice so that you can achieve better results. You can then use what you learnt about focus from this spell and apply it to others." Harry put the cat down and picked up his wand.
"I will now demonstrate a charm." Harry informed them. "Aguamenti!"
He pointed his wand at his own bowl and filled it with water.
Once full, he turned back to the class. "The wand movement is that of a wave." Harry demonstrated. "With these two spells you will never be without water to drink. An important survival tip for you.
"Now, I will show you a very unique technique." Harry said seriously. "Animal to human transformations. It is more of a ritual that requires a transfigured bowl and conjured water."
"Mrow?" The cat said with suspicion.
"We take an animal, such as this delightful little kitty, and we bathe it in water, like so."
The cat screeched and leapt out of his arms, transforming into Minerva McGonagall as it landed.
"And there you have it class! A perfect animal to human transformation!" Harry crowed triumphantly.
The class was looking on in awe… except Hermione who was viciously flipping through her textbook looking for the documentation.
"Mister Potter!" Minerva screeched.
"Class, as you can see, the specimen now has all of the speech and mental abilities of a human as though it were that human."
"Potter!" She took a step closer.
"In fact, the specimen has no idea it ever was an animal."
"Sit down Mister Potter!"
"Catnip?" Harry asked innocently as he held up a hand holding the feline addictive substance.
Minerva involuntarily moved forward to sniff his hand.
"As you can see, the specimen retains some of its natural instincts." Harry lectured.
Minerva raised her wand with difficulty and vanished the source of her addiction. "Harry Potter, take your seat now!"
"Does anyone have any questions?" Harry asked as he ignored the fuming teacher. "Pavarti, yes?"
"How do you reverse the process?" She asked curiously.
"Oh for Merlin's sake." The Professor groaned.
"It's difficult, but it can be done." Harry nodded gravely. "Often you need to just wait for the specimen to revert on its own. But otherwise…" He raised his wand quickly and cast a transfiguration that turned the Professor into a cat that largely resembled the Professor's previous feline form.
The cat started to growl at him.
"Erm… that's it for class today." Harry said hastily as the cat backed down into a pouncing position. "Your homework is to be able to complete the book to bowl transfiguration, research animagus or ask Granger about it and finally… ask the Weasley twins about the perils of pranking teachEEERSSS!" Harry practically screamed the last bit as he ran from the room with an angry cat on his tail.
The rest of the class turned to Hermione who started to giggle in realisation.
"What's so funny?" Neville, her table partner asked.
"I think Professor McGonagall is a cat animagus. She can turn herself into a cat. Harry knew this and took over her lesson."
"Why is that funny?"
"Because right now Harry Potter is being chased through the school by a professor in the shape of a cat."
Harry ran to the only place he could think of. The hospital wing.
Madam Pomfrey was shocked as the school's celebrity student came barrelling in before darting behind her.
"Protect me Madam Pomfrey! An evil cat is after me!"
Poppy could see the laughter in the boy's eyes and wondered what was going on.
Her answer arrived in the form of her colleague in cat form.
"Is there a reason you are stalking Mister Potter, Minerva?" She asked as she valiantly tried not to smile.
Valiant though her efforts were… she failed.
The cat began meowing and hissing and growling.
Poppy raised an eyebrow at the fact that Minerva had not transformed to human form. She took out her wand and cast some diagnostic spells.
She then determined the problem and reversed the transfiguration.
"Really Minerva, beaten by a first year?" Poppy chided teasingly.
"That… first year is a menace!" She hissed. "He not only took over my class but he threatened to… bathe me in some fantasy ritual." She said bathe like a curse.
"Minerva! Harry is only eleven, I doubt he has those urges yet." Poppy scowled.
Harry looked a little green as Minerva was outraged.
"As a cat! He was going to bathe me as a cat."
"Perhaps one of you could give me a full accounting of what has occurred? As enjoyable as hearing snippets is, I believe I need the full story."
"I will tell the story Mister Potter." Minerva said warningly.
Poppy chuckled as she pulled up a chair and indicated for Harry to sit on a nearby bed. She then listened to Minerva's tale with much enjoyment.
"Do you agree with Professor McGonagall's recounting, Mister Potter?" She asked as Minerva finished.
"She forgot the homework I set, but that's about right."
"To be able to perform the book to bowl transfiguration by the next lesson, to ask or research animagi and to ask the Weasley Twins about the perils of pranking a teacher." Harry shrugged.
"Harry, did you know the cat was Professor McGonagall at the beginning of the lesson?" She asked shrewdly.
Harry looked sheepish. "Yes'm."
"How many of your fellow students managed to complete the book to bowl transfiguration?"
"None of them. They all managed to make something that will hold water, but only a few had anything near metallic."
Poppy nodded. "Minerva, what were you planning to do to Mister Potter?"
"Aside from getting him to change me back?" She asked with a sarcastic sneer.
"Minerva." Poppy said warningly.
"The boy will be serving detentions, that is for certain."
"Good, then give him some points and make him your assistant in class."
"The boy is a menace worse than his father!"
"Yes, and quite the prodigy." Poppy said calmly. "Personally I think he would give James a run for his money in raw talent. Even if most of his knowledge does come from that blasted scar, he still has the skill to use it. Give him his detentions and make him work on OWL level spells. Maybe if you get him to pass his exams early you can be rid of him."
"Aww… more work?" Harry groaned. "I already had to teach a class today."
"Silence Harry, you brought this on yourself." Poppy chastised, she was enjoying herself far too much.
At dinner that evening things became quite awkward when Seamus Finnegan wobbled unsteadily over to the Slytherin table and up to Harry with a ridiculous dopey grin on his face.
"You're a'righ' Po'er." The boy slurred. "You know your stuff… best… day… ever."
Seamus then collapsed in a heap on the floor.
Severus and Minerva quickly rushed over.
"Disgusting. The boy is drunk." Severus sneered.
"Impossible! Where would he get alcohol?" Minerva challenged.
"I blame those reprobate twins of yours." Severus smirked.
"Perhaps Seamus could use a sobering potion?" Harry suggested pointedly to his Head of House.
Of course from Severus' point of view it was more of an order and he merely turned on his heel and left to carry it out.
"Erm, Professor, I think Seamus managed to transfigure the water into rum." Tracey Davis said hesitantly.
"How on Earth would he know how to do that?"
"I don't know Ma'am, but I overheard him talking about it as we were leaving class."
Harry had to bury his face in his hands as he tried not to laugh. Apparently he was so good a teacher that whereas in his previous time round Seamus had blown himself up, this time round he had the focus to actually make the rum.
Quirrenus Quirrell was truly nervous. Not the simpering, stuttering fool he played to trick Dumbledore and the rest of the school, no… he was beginning to get truly worried. He was seated at his desk and pulling yet another nail from his purple turban. So far he counted ten, and that didn't include the ones he had seen embed themselves in doorframes, walls, blackboards and other surfaces.
He was beginning to think his cover was blown.
"Cease your infernal worries, you fool!" His master hissed into his mind. "It is clearly some childish prank, your act as a bumbling idiot is clearly working and some of the more rambunctious children are capitalising on it."
"As you say, My Master, but should one of these nails hit their target, I may be forced to seek medical attention and that would risk exposing you!"
"You truly are a pitiful creature that a tiny piece of metal scares you." The Dark Lord hissed in disgust. "A simple Obliviate will deal with anyone who discovers me."
"Of course, My Lo- OW!"
Quirrell suppressed the urge to moan in further pain as he rubbed his ear where it seemed one of the nails had hit its target.
Harry was having the time of his life. His first week back at Hogwarts and he was top of the year academically. His professors commented that he had a very mature essay writing method. Harry didn't care, he did his homework as soon as he got it, he knew he would have to start studying by third year but for now, first year work was boringly easy.
His current project was Quirrell. He couldn't just kill him, but it was on his list of backup plans. No, what he wanted was to expose Voldemort; so he had taken to banishing nails at Quirrell's turban to try and unwrap it.
His aim sucked.
He decided to take a break for a few days, after he had actually got one on the man's ear, to avoid drawing suspicion. But it was still fun. He also had plenty of ideas.
Over the past week he had been presented his cloak by a suit of armour that had apparently marched into the old man's office and taken it whilst the old man fired spell after spell at it. He had followed the armour all the way to the Great Hall where the students were having lunch.
The students watched in amazement as the suit marched up to Harry and bowed low.
"Mister Potter, you must return that cloak to me!" The Headmaster ordered.
"Why? Is it yours?" Harry asked.
"You know full well that it is not, but you are clearly not ready to handle such a responsibility."
"If it's not yours then you don't have the right to say that." Harry shrugged as he carefully placed the cloak in his bag.
"I am far older and wiser than you are and-"
"Prove it." Harry interrupted.
"I beg your pardon?" Albus asked taken aback.
"Prove you are older and wiser."
Albus was slightly flustered for a moment before he rallied himself. "The fact that you even asked such a thing shows I am."
"How does it prove it?" Harry rolled his eyes.
"I'm afraid you wouldn't understand." The aging Headmaster said sagely.
"Well… there are over two hundred people here right now ranging from me and my fellow firsties up to Professors McGonagall and Flitwick. I'm sure someone will understand and be able to dumb it down for me."
Dumbledore then realised that he had an audience… and some of them were livid.
"This is neither the time nor the place, Mister Potter. Now, I will just take that cloak for saf-"
"AH! MY DOSE!"
The assembled Slytherins quickly backed away as they were splattered by blood flying from the Headmaster's nose thanks to the metallic fist of the suit of armour impacting with his face.
"Midder Potter! Dat wad uncalled for!" Albus said angrily as he held his fractured face.
"I didn't do it! He did!" Harry said pointing accusingly at the suit of armour.
Unfortunately the armour merely turned and bowed to Harry.
"Albus! Cease this ridiculous farce!" Minerva ordered angrily as she stormed down with Poppy. "You were warned by Mister Potter and Madam Bones that you would be charged with stealing if you didn't return his family heirloom. Now go with Poppy and get your nose fixed."
"Midder Potter id clearly do immadure do be trudded wid de cloak!"
"Dat is- THAT is not your decision."
"Maybe he could use an escort to the Hospital Wing." Harry muttered.
To Harry and the student's amusement the suit of armour bowed again before grabbing the Headmasters elbow and frog-marching him away and ignoring the protests of his captive.
"Are you sure you didn't have anything to do with that?" Tracey Davis leaned over and asked as they watched the Deputy Headmistress and School Nurse follow the unusual pair out of the Great Hall.
"I don't think I did." Harry scratched his head thoughtfully. "I didn't even ask the suit of armour to get me my cloak."
"What's so special about a cloak?" Daphne asked.
"It was my father's. It's his invisibility cloak and it's all I have left of my parents." Harry said sadly.
Both girls and Pansy gave Harry a look of sadness. With Draco temporarily neutralised things were rather nice in Slytherin. He still tried to lord over everyone and insult their social standing and bloodlines, but he was rather ineffective.
The other thing that happened was Harry had confronted Hermione. He actually found it cute this time round, how she would try and answer every question. Unfortunately she was very annoyed with him because he was ahead of her on winning points and grades. But Harry didn't want her to suffer the same way she did last time so he cornered her one afternoon when classes had let out.
"You have to stop trying to answer every question." He said bluntly.
"What? Why? I suppose you want to be the one to answer them." She sniffed indignantly.
"Have you seen me putting my hand up?" Harry asked pointedly. "No, I know that I know the stuff. The teachers know because they have seen my work."
"Then why don't you put your hand up if you do know the answers?" She asked doubtfully.
"Because the questions aren't meant for us." Harry smiled. "They are meant for the rest of the class who might not know the answers."
"That doesn't make any sense!" She argued. "If they don't know the answers then why would they try to answer?"
"Professor Flitwick says that they ask the questions so that the students can think about the question and work out the answer. You and I know the answer and don't have to work it out. We have it committed to memory already. So… by answering the questions we are hurting our classmates' chances of learning."
"What about questions about facts? Like history questions, or names of plants and their attributes?" She asked, she was having trouble believing a teacher wouldn't want them answering questions.
"Apparently it is to do with helping them remember stuff. If we let them try and focus, they might remember. If they give the right answer then they will remember it because they are praised, if they don't they will remember because they are told they were wrong. Professor Sprout told me that one."
"Why did you ask the Professors these questions?" She asked suspiciously.
Harry just smiled warmly. "Because I saw that your actions were making you unlikeable. You should see the looks Ron Weasley gives you.
"You really should go to Ravenclaw, you will have a much better group of people to study with."
"Maybe if I stay in Gryffindor they will learn better study habits." She countered primly.
"Or you could damage their self-esteem and force them into habits that don't work for them.
"Why did you want to go into Gryffindor?" Harry asked. He knew the answer from his first time in Hogwarts, but the answer might not hold water at this point.
"It's where Headmaster Dumbledore went."
"And he's such a great role-model." Harry laughed.
Hermione was livid. "Headmaster Dumbledore is a great man! He has done so many things!"
"That just makes him experienced, I would have thought that having seen him around me, you'd realise that he's not the best person. Besides, if you want a role model, follow Professor Flitwick."
"I want more than just academia." Hermione sighed unhappily.
"Then Professor Flitwick is your man." Harry declared. "Did you know he is a Champion Dueller?"
"Of course I do!" She said indignantly.
"Right… what was I thinking." He sighed with a smile. "Go and talk to Professor Flitwick, tell him about everything we talked about and you might find life becoming a bit nicer here."
The next day Hermione had sought him out and thanked him. She still answered a lot of questions but she only put her hand up if it seemed that no one knew the answers.
Harry was now sitting in his room with the Sorting Hat trying to get some answers.
"It's only natural that the Castle wants to aid and protect you. You are the Master and she is your very willing servant." The Hat assured him.
"Was it like this for all the heirs… what about Riddle?"
"Ah… Riddle." The Hat spoke with some shame. "It seems that we might have aided in the making of Voldemort. The power and prestige the Castle granted him amongst his peers only fuelled his ego.
"Make no mistake, he was a sick minded little boy when he got here, but we didn't help."
"But it's ok to help me?"
The Hat laughed. "You aren't a greedy little eleven-year-old with no compassion. You have lived seventeen years and subconsciously dedicated your life to helping others!"
"Professor Flitwick has been around to ask if I would talk to Miss Granger about the houses again. Something about a green-eyed boy discussing the important things in life with her?"
Harry blushed. "I just wanted her to have a better start to her schooling than she did the last time."
"And you helped her, even if you weren't intending to be altruistic, you were."
Harry sat there for a moment. If he was honest with himself then, yes, he did seem to go out of his way to help people.
"So I should expect the castle to be keeping an eye on me?" He asked warily.
"Think of it like a child wanting to make sure it's parent is ok."
"Don't you mean a parent wanting to make sure it's child is ok?"
"Usually, but the Castle is unique with its regard for you. To everyone else it is motherly, but from you it seeks love and comfort."
"Really not sure I'm the best person for the job." Harry muttered.
"Tough! Now, let's focus on more important things." The Hat said sternly. "Are you really going to spend all year firing nails at Quirrell just to try and expose Voldemort?"
"Of course not, in a few weeks I was going try fire. I also have a plan that involves Cornish Pixies!" Harry declared proudly.
"By the mercy of the gods." The Hat groaned. "Why don't you just report him to Madam Bones?"
"And how am I going to explain that I knew he was carrying Voldemort around?"
"Because the Castle told you?"
"Wait… are you asking me to lie or are you telling me that the Castle actually knows that Quirrell has Voldemort because it can sense it?" Harry asked suspiciously.
"I think we are well past the point of caring about lying, Harry." The Hat chuckled. "The Castle has wards to detect dark magic… Voldemort is as dark as they come. I told you we knew about Quirrell at your Sorting, the Castle and myself are not able to communicate with the outside world, especially against the wishes of the Headmaster. But you, as Lord of Slytherin, can hear what we say and speak on our behalf."
"Why doesn't Dumbledore just deal with him?"
"He wants to try and save Quirrell, remember?" The Hat scoffed.
"Save Quirrell? By putting temptation at his front door?" Harry asked incredulously.
"Indeed, and that doesn't even take into account that you and I know he is committed to his master."
"Is Dumbledore clinically insane?" Harry asked.
"I wouldn't know, he certainly acts like he has lost his marbles at times."
"Wow, and I still have to deal with the Basilisk, Pettigrew, Sirius, the Tri-Wizard Cup and the horcruxes." Harry sighed.
"Nobody said you have to do this alone, Harry." The Hat said soothingly.
"Of course not, I just have to convince people to help me without telling them everything I know!"
"Let's deal with Quirrell first and handle the rest later."
Convincing Amelia Bones was actually fairly simple. Harry had gone with Professor Flitwick to see Professor McGonagall who had invited Amelia Bones to Hogwarts. The word of the Sorting Hat was enough to convince them all. It also begged the question from Amelia:
"Why the devil hasn't Dumbledore done anything about this?"
"He's on this whole redemption thing." Harry shrugged as they sat in Harry's chambers. Being the Lord of Slytherin came with a few perks like access to the outside of the Slytherin Dorms directly from his room and Floo access.
"Albus Dumbledore would do well to remember his place!" Amelia fumed. "It is my job to handle crimes and the punishments befitting them!"
"Why is Voldemort even hiding in a school professor?" Filius asked.
"The Philosopher's Stone." The Hat said solemnly.
"I beg your pardon?" Amelia asked.
Minerva sighed. "Albus decided to remove the Philosopher's Stone that belongs to Nicholas Flamel from Gringotts and hide it in the castle. He tasked various teachers with creating traps and tasks to protect it."
"Including Quirrell." The Hat added.
"WHAT?" Came the collective response from the adults.
"Why the devil would he do that if he knows Quirrell is possessed?" Minerva asked.
"I don't know about the rest of you, but a first year, Harry especially, could easily get past my task. Albus refused to let me install some active protection wards that even You-Know-Who would falter at." Filius admitted.
"Why 'especially Harry'?" Pomona asked, she had been updated on the situation with Harry, Snape and Dumbledore as everyone thought she was trustworthy and deserved to know.
"Young Lord Slytherin here is quite the Seeker." Filius grinned. Harry looked a little shocked. "I quite enjoy an early morning walk around the grounds, my boy. I've seen you practising."
Harry was very relieved, but so was the Hat as both were worried that the tiny charms master had discovered Harry's true secret.
"Harry's future in Quidditch aside we need a plan to deal with the You-Know-Who."
"How about Lord No Name?" Harry piped up.
"I beg your pardon?" Amelia asked.
"Everyone is afraid of his name, but he was beaten by a baby and lost everything. The Hat was telling me about how Draco could be cast out of his house for challenging me because it would be seen as challenging his father and that would make him 'Draco No Name'. So call Voldemort 'Lord No Name'. Seems fitting."
"And quite the slap in the face." Filius giggled.
"And legally binding." Amelia mused. "Anyway, regarding Lord No Name… we need a plan."
"Why not just stun Quirrell?" Minerva asked.
"Quirrell was not given the post of DADA professor lightly, Minerva. He was highly skilled, I trained him myself at duelling." Filius warned.
"Would you like to have some fun with some people?" Harry asked the adults with a cheeky grin as a plan formed in his mind.
*Chapter 3*: Chapter 3
Harry had to beg and plead with the adults to let him do it his way. In the end he had stuck out his bottom lip and looked up at them with soulful eyes.
When that didn't work he sulked causing them to laugh and decide to give him a shot.
Harry's plans wouldn't come to fruition until Halloween and several key events occurred before then.
The first was the flying lesson. As with his previous first year, poor Neville had fallen from his broom, broken his wrist and dropped his Remembrall.
Draco had remained true to form and stolen it and climbed his broom and flown away.
Harry changed tactics.
"Everyone follow me and look upset and angry!" Harry ordered the other students before he ran after Draco. "THIEF! MALFOY! GIVE THAT BACK YOU THIEF!" He yelled.
Behind him Hermione, Daphne, Tracey and the other Slytherins followed along with the Hufflepuffs. The Ravenclaws and Gryffindors hung back, still not trusting the current Lord Slytherin.
"What's up Potter? Too scared to challenge me on a broom?" Draco taunted as he flew lower.
"MISTER MALFOY! LAND THAT BROOM IMMEDIATELY!" Came the angry shout of Minerva McGonagall.
Malfoy looked fairly ill as he lost control and fell the five feet to the ground.
"Flying without a Professor to supervise and stealing to boot? Outrageous! Wait till your father hears about this!" She ranted as she grabbed him by the shoulder and hauled him away.
Harry stood there grinning as the other students watched the spectacle in shock.
"Did you plan that, Harry?" Hermione asked.
"Not exactly." He shrugged. "I just knew a teacher would come and he would get in trouble for flying. It will be even worse when his father finds out his son is now branded a thief!"
There were several pureblood gasps. "His father will disown him!" Pansy whispered.
"I doubt it. He will probably throw money at Minister Fudge to have it go away." Harry sighed.
"That's terrible!" Justin Finch-Fletchly said angrily.
"Nope, that's the Pureblood way." Harry quipped.
Within the school, Draco's reputation plummeted. He was suspended from the school for two weeks.
There had been an interesting incident when the Minister of Magic had arrived in the Great Hall with a group of uniformed men who were not Aurors.
"If everyone would please line up over here we will have you back to your meal as quickly as possible." Fudge ordered pompously.
"Minister Fudge, what is the meaning of this? Why have you brought Obliviators to the school?" Dumbledore asked highly irritated.
At the Slytherin table Harry's eyes widened in shock. Having his memories altered could be a very bad thing. "Ah shit!"
"Language!" Pansy snapped.
"Why are they here?" Millicent asked worriedly.
"Draco." Daphne snarled. The girls looked around for the currently missing student.
"She means they are here to remove the knowledge that Draco is a thief." Harry sighed. "I'll be right back." He said as he stood up and made his way to the arguing Minister and Headmaster.
"You can not come in here and assault my students on the whim of a disgruntled father!"
"It's just a few harmless memories, Albus!"
"If they are so harmless then why remove them?" Filius countered snidely.
"I… harmless to them, this is a matter between those of a higher station and has already been decided." Fudge said sternly.
There was a sudden sound of metal clanking and approaching metal footsteps and they all turned as fifty suits of armour marched into the Great Hall and proceeded to place themselves between the adults and the students.
"What is the meaning of this? Albus, cease this at once!"
Albus Dumbledore was a little worried. The last time he had an encounter with one of the Hogwarts' suits of armour he came off with a broken nose.
"Go away Fudge, you're not wanted here."
Albus sighed in frustration.
"Who is that?" Fudge demanded as he tried to peer past the suits of armour.
"Oi, announce me!" Came the same voice as it hissed to its neighbour.
There was an aggravated growl before Professor Snape's voice was heard. "Make way for Lord Harry Potter of Slytherin!"
Two of the suits of armour turned to the side revealing the Professor and a small black haired, green-eyed boy with glasses.
"Who the devil is that?" Fudge asked as he got even more annoyed. Lucius had been very firm, if he got the job done his donation would be… excessive, fail and… he'd remove his support altogether.
"That is Lord Harry Potter of Slytherin." Filius grinned. "Incidentally, as the last Heir of the Founders, he owns Hogwarts."
"What? I never read that." Albus objected.
Filius shrugged dismissively. "You are a Gryffindor, it's expected that you make these kinds of simple mistakes."
Dumbledore's eyes narrowed slightly at the insult… but had to let it slide to deal with more pressing matters.
"That's Harry Potter? A bit on the scrawny side isn't he? EEP!" Fudge jumped back as one of the suits of armour took a menacing step forward.
"What's the big idea bringing Obliviators to a school?" Harry demanded as he crossed his arms and tapped his foot imperiously.
Everyone who could see him thought he looked absolutely adorable.
"Don't you worry Mister Potter, we'll have it all sorted out soon." Fudge said with a patronising smile.
"That's Lord Slytherin to you Fudge. Now answer my question." Harry glowered.
Minerva was having a hard time not picking the boy up and squeezing the life out of the cutie pie.
"Just some memories that need to be dealt with, nothing to worry about."
"If it's nothing to worry about… leave."
Fudge was a little taken aback by the boy's attitude.
"Just as soon as we wipe those nasty memories away." He assured him, still smiling falsely.
"Let's see your paperwork then." Harry held out his hand.
"Every Obliviator needs to present the required authorisation papers to the wizard or witch being Obliviated." Filius groaned. He was kicking himself for not thinking of that himself.
Harry was just grasping at straws, he had no idea that there was required paperwork; he just wanted to keep the argument going till he could get Fudge out of the school.
"Well, Cornelius? We wouldn't want to breach Ministry Laws now, would we?" Albus asked with a slight smugness.
"I believe my presence is authority enough!" Fudge puffed up pompously.
"I don't." Harry retorted. "Get out before the castle kicks you out." He ordered.
"Now see here boy- GURK!" Fudge was suddenly grabbed by the throat by one of the suits of armour before being dragged away, the Obliviators quickly followed of their own accord when it appeared the rest of the suits might try the same with them.
The school watched as the Minister and his Obliviators were chased out by suits of armour.
"Do you think he'll have the Obliviators erase each other's memories of his embarrassment?" Harry wondered.
"Hopefully one of them will erase the Minister's memory." Filius remarked dryly.
"Mister Potter, you cannot keep using the castle's armour for your fun and games." Dumbledore said wearily. "Furthermore, you must cease your claims that you are the owner of the castle!"
"I didn't make them do anything!" Harry said defensively. "And I'm not the one making the claims about owning the castle, the castle is."
"It seems Professor Snape was correct. You do have a tendency to tell lies." Albus sadly.
"Now see here, Headmaster! You had better have some proof to back up those accusations." Filius bristled.
"Filius, surely you can see that the lad has developed a nasty habit-"
"Of being falsely accused." Minerva interrupted. "I am getting a little bit fed up with Mister Potter being maligned like this in public! It is bad enough seeing as he is a student but even worse as he is a noble lord!"
Albus looked a little chagrined at that. "I do apologise, Mister Potter. I am of course wrong to bring this up in public, but at some point we need to sit down to try and sort this out."
Harry felt a little appeased. The apology was honest and sincere. But it didn't deal with the overall problem. As the American's would say, you can't un-ring the bell.
"Fine, make an appointment with my counsel."
"Madam Bones." Filius supplied. "She has offered to aid Harry as he deals with his family estates and new Lordship."
"That won't be necessary, I will handle those as his Magical Guardian." Albus said dismissively.
"I'm an emancipated minor by merit of my Lordship. And Madam Bones is my appointed regent at my request." Harry frowned. It seemed the Headmaster was still too controlling, his previous apology quickly forgotten.
"Just talk to Amelia, Albus!" Minerva snapped. "And do it privately." She then grabbed the aging Headmaster and like the suits of armour before her, frog-marched him back to the table.
"Everybody! Your attention please!" Filius called out as he climbed on the staff table so he could be seen. "In order to prevent a repeat of today's little fiasco with the Obliviators, I am advising all of you to write to your parents immediately after the meal. Tell them about Minister Fudge's actions and the Obliviators and also tell them about why they were here: To erase any knowledge of Mister Draco Malfoy's actions as a thief.
"If your parents know then they can file a complaint and tell others, this will make having your memories erased, pointless."
Harry, who was still standing gave a pointed look at Hermione. Hopefully she would see the half-goblin as a much better role-model.
The Obliviators were not seen again. This may have had something to do with the Daily Prophet's headline the next morning:
'MINISTER FUDGE LEADS OBLIVIATORS IN ATTACK ON OUR CHILDREN!'
It was safe to assume that Fudge had his hands full with other matters.
The day after that headline Harry was treated to the most surreal moment of his new lease on life.
Pansy Parkinson, the girl whom he assumed was born with a sneer on her face, came bouncing into the Slytherin Common Room with an honest to God smile on her face. She actually looked like a pretty eleven-year-old for once.
Furthermore she was squealing with happiness as she literally jumped into Harry's lap and hugged him and peppered his face with kisses.
Harry just sat there stiffly… completely unsure what he should do as the other students watched in confusion.
"Erm… Pansy? What the hell?" He asked calmly.
"You freed me Potter!" She declared as she jumped up and began dancing around the room with her arms in the air, her head tilted upwards and a grin on her face.
Harry didn't have too much of a muggle education, but he had heard rumours that women burned their undergarments during the women's rights era to 'gain their freedom'… well, that was what he thought they did… Harry was certain he hadn't touched Pansy's undergarments.
"I didn't do it!" He said frantically.
Pansy stopped and look at him, still smiling. "Not directly, but because you got Draco suspended and branded a thief, my father withdrew the marriage contract! I'M FREE!" She squealed.
"Pansy, what if he arranges one with someone else… like Nott, or Crabbe or Goyle?" Millicent asked nervously.
Pansy stumbled mid-twirl as her face paled. "Merlin... please, no!" She whispered as she fell to her knees.
"Are all you girls in a similar situation?" Harry asked the room at large.
"Some of us, but not all." Daphne admitted. "My parents would never do that." She said primly.
Harry pursed his lips in thought. "Ok, all the girls follow me." He ordered as he stood and made his way to the exit.
Surprisingly all the girls followed, some out of hope and the rest out of curiosity. Harry led them to a nearby classroom.
"Ok, everyone who is bound by a marriage contract stand over there." He instructed as pointed to his right.
To his horror, ten girls of varying ages moved.
"Ok, you lot stand over there." He told the rest as he pointed to his left. "Now, any of you who want the marriage contract, join the those on the left."
Two girls moved, both sixth years, but neither looked truly happy.
"How many of you have Death Eaters for fathers?"
Six hands went up hesitantly.
"Ok, good news… I should be able to get the girls from Death Eater families out of their contracts easily, you will be free to marry who you want." Harry sighed.
One of the sixth year girls ran back across the room sheepishly.
"The rest of you I will investigate the contracts if I can and see what I can do." Harry promised.
The last sixth year ran back across along with a third year girl.
Harry turned to the un-betrothed on his left. "If you find yourselves in their situation then come and see me. Remember to support each other and look out for each other. I suppose I need to speak to the girls in the other houses as well."
"They should be proud to continue tradition!" A seventh year girl from the left argued.
"Really? How would you like to be betrothed to Hagrid? If your dad was a Death Eater I can arrange it, you know?"
"How can you arrange it?" Tracey asked.
"All Death Eaters swore an oath of vassal servitude to Voldemort." Harry rolled his eyes at the gasps. "Except they actually specified 'Lord Slytherin', which is now me."
"No true Pureblood would do that!" A fifth year girl snarled. "Especially to a lowly Halfblood."
"Well, Voldemort's true name is Tom Marvolo Riddle, his mum was a Squib and his dad was a muggle… so yes, a 'True Pureblood' would do that."
"Don't believe me? Ask Dumbledore, he was one of his teachers." Harry shrugged as he walked out of the classroom.
Halloween saw the return of Draco and the fruition of Harry's plan for Quirrell. Although the adults involved didn't realise how much of it was actually part of his plan.
Harry had asked Minerva and Amelia to invite the Minister and the Board of Governors to the Halloween Feast at the request of Lord Slytherin. Filius had out done himself with the decorations. He was especially pleased with the floating Jack-O-Lanterns that Harry had suggested.
Much to Harry's pleasure, seated at the Staff table was Lucius Malfoy and Cornelius Fudge. He knew Fudge wouldn't miss the chance to rub elbows with the rich and/or famous.
Harry had taken great pains to ensure Hermione was in the Great Hall. This had meant surreptitiously hexing Ron to prevent a repeat of what happened last time.
Harry was seated at the Slytherin table with the Sorting Hat balanced on his head as he nibbled at his food waiting for the main event.
"TROLL! TROLL IN THE DUNGEON!" Quirrell screamed as he burst into the Great Hall. "Just thought you should know." He said weakly before collapsing near Harry.
There was a sudden uproar amongst staff and students. Harry ignored it all as he covertly used his wand to guide a Jack-O-Lantern over to himself.
"SILENCE!" Dumbledore roared causing everyone to freeze. "You will remain calm. Prefects will escort the students to their dormitories whilst-"
"Are you trying to get my students killed, Headmaster?" Snape asked calmly. Internally Snape was once again not in control. He had no idea why.
One of Harry's instructions had been: Ensure the safety of the students.
"I beg your pardon?" Albus asked, taken aback at someone, especially Severus, questioning his orders.
"Professor Quirrell just stated that the Troll is in the Dungeons. My students' dorms are in the Dungeons." Snape explained, much to his own surprise. "It would certainly be more prudent to have everyone remain here until the Troll is dealt with, perhaps Lord Slytherin could request the Castle lock down the Great Hall for protection.
Even Harry was surprised at that suggestion. He was so surprised that he lost his concentration and prematurely tipped the Jack-O-Lantern, which spilt its flame on Quirrell's turban.
The whole thing went up with a flash… helped along by Harry having dribbled a flask of flammable fuel on it whilst Quirrell was playing possum.
Poppy and Filius quickly jumped over the staff table as Harry began putting the flames out and removing the turban.
Quirrell had abandoned his act and was screaming.
Eventually Quirrell stood there… turban-less.
There were gasps from behind him.
"Foolish boy!" Came the hoarse hissing voice of Voldemort. "We are discovered!"
"Master! Forgive me!"
Amelia led the staff with wands drawn as they slowly approached the possessed professor.
"Minister, Mister Malfoy? Surely you will aid us in defending the children from the Dark Lord? I would have thought you would be anxious to prove yourself, Mister Malfoy." Minerva prompted.
Lucius paled at the thought of turning on his Master.
Fudge… nearly fudged himself. He sat there like a rock… a shaking rock of fear.
Lucius knew he had to make a choice, he drew his wand, prepared to turn it one way or the other depending on who appeared to be the stronger.
"Surrender yourself, Quirrell, you too No Name." Amelia ordered. "We will not hesitate to use lethal force."
Quirrell reached out and grabbed Harry by the robes with one hand whilst the other drew his wand, aiming at the Hufflepuff table nearby.
"Potter and I will be leaving with my Master. I suggest you lower your wands or I will kill your precious little children." Quirrell snarled.
Harry rolled his eyes from his position as 'hostage'. He knew he could get out of this situation without even drawing his wand. He decided to engage in a little of the bad guy bantering that Voldemort was so fond of.
"There are an awful lot of Purebloods at that table, Quirrell. I doubt Lord No Name back there would appreciate you destroying what he stands for."
"DO NOT CALL ME THAT!" The spirit of Voldemort raged. "I am Lord Voldemort, the Heir of Slytherin!
"No, I'm the Heir of Slytherin, I became Lord Slytherin when I beat you as a baby."
"LIES! No mere child could defeat one as powerful as I!"
"Then why does the castle consider me the heir?"
"LIES! Lucius, come, we are departing."
All eyes turned to the platinum haired man.
"I heard he finally broke free from your Imperious Curse after I defeated you." Harry grinned, still held in Quirrell's grip.
"A ruse, no doubt, to evade capture. Show them your true self my servant."
Lucius was clearly fighting an internal battle, beads of sweat were forming upon his elegant brow.
"Surely you aren't going to succumb to this monster again, Mister Malfoy!" Harry asked in his most innocent eleven-year-old voice… which, in hindsight, would have been more effective if he hadn't used the big word: 'succumb'.
Lucius just stood there, shaking slightly with indecision.
"So you would betray me, Malfoy? I will remember this, your once great house will lie in ruins and it is all your own doing."
"But he's a Pureblood! I thought you wanted all Purebloods to rule over everyone else. You can't do that if you kill them all!"
"Silence boy! Severus, my faithful servant, you will aid your master."
"My allegiance lies with Lord Slytherin."
To be honest, Severus didn't care one way or another. He was fairly happy to sit back and let the servant bond guide his body. He still wanted Potter dead, but he had no desire to go back to regular torture curses with Voldemort.
"I AM LORD SLYTHERIN!" Voldemort roared.
"Ok, I'm bored. Have we all heard enough?" Harry asked.
"I believe you have made your point, Harry." Filius said with steel in his voice. Harry had informed them he had a special method for taking care of Voldemort, but he still worried for what was becoming his favourite student.
"About time too." Harry simply raised his hand to touch Quirrell's hand that was attached to the elbow around his neck. The sound of burning flesh filled the air followed quickly by the stench of the same.
"AHHHHH!" Screamed Quirrell as he tried to release Harry. But Harry's hand snapped out and grabbed his wand hand and both quickly turned to dust as Quirrell screamed in fear.
"RUN YOU FOOL!" Voldemort screamed.
Harry dropped to his knees and began grabbing for Quirrell's ankles, again turning them to dust.
"FOOLISH BOY! YOU CANNOT DEFEAT ME! I WILL RETURN AND I WILL SEE YOU DESTROYED!"
Harry watched as Voldemort's spirit rose from the screaming Quirrell's head and charged for him. But Harry just side-stepped.
"Ole!" He cried happily as the Spirit turned and fled. Harry turned back to the assembled teachers and visiting guests, the students cowered against the wall in fear, especially the Slytherins. "Well that was fun!"
"Amelia, perhaps you should do something about Quirrell?" Minerva suggested as the man continued to scream.
A quick stunner allowed a tense silence to fall over the hall.
"Where's Fudge?" Harry asked.
All eyes turned to the staff table. Very cautiously, the Minister raised his head from his position hiding behind the Headmaster's throne like chair.
"Is he gone?"
Dumbledore at his patronizing best addressed the Minister. "Yes, Cornelius, Lord Voldemort-"
"Lord No Name." Harry corrected.
"I beg your pardon?"
"He has lost his titles and holdings to me, hence, he is Lord No Name… or more accurately, Mister No Name." Harry explained.
Dumbledore rolled his eyes, he was not going to argue again in public over whether or not Harry was Lord Slytherin.
"He is gone. All that is left is his victim, Professor Quirrell."
"Victim? He wasn't a victim, he was a very willing servant." Harry scoffed.
"Now, now Harry-"
"Lord Slytherin." Harry corrected.
"That remains to be seen-"
"Not to the Ministry, I checked the records. Lord Harry Potter of Slytherin was entered into the books on Halloween in '81." Amelia countered.
"Regardless you should show respect where appropriate." Filius said sternly. "It was Lord Slytherin who arranged for us to all be here to capture Quirrell after the Hat and Castle informed him of Mister No Name's presence."
"The Hat also informed us that you were made aware of these facts and chose not to report them." Amelia scowled. "There will be an investigation!"
"I was within my rights as-"
"You had no right to interfere in the course of justice!"
"Nor the right to purposefully endanger innocent children." Harry added.
Again, Albus was taken aback at being admonished by an eleven-year-old.
"Quite right Milord." Amelia agreed.
"Excuse me, I apologise, but do the children need to be here for this? They should really return to their rooms but the troll is still out there." Professor Vector interrupted timidly.
"Of course, thank you for reminding us, Professor." Amelia said sincerely. "Minerva, could you call some of my Aurors in to aid with Quirrell, I trust you can handle a simple troll, Albus?" She asked pointedly as Minerva left.
"The troll is under control… and I didn't mean for that to rhyme." Harry frowned.
"How do you know?" Filius asked.
"I told him." The Hat spoke up from the floor where he had been knocked after Quirrell grabbed Harry.
Harry quickly retrieved him. "Suits of armour have him corralled and neutralised. Someone will need to clean up the mess."
"You killed it!?" Hagrid asked in horror.
"What? No! We fed it." Harry assured him.
"You fed the troll?" Filius asked in suppressed amusement.
"The way to control any creature with limited intelligence, is through its stomach… provided it has one." The Hat said wisely.
"Too true." Professor Kettleburn grunted.
"And you doubted me." Harry smirked at the Hat.
"I don't have a stomach so I wouldn't know, Harry." The Hat said defensively.
"That was your idea, Potter?" Kettleburn asked with a raised eyebrow.
"Yes sir. I read a lot." Harry and the Hat had come up with this excuse for a lot of his advanced knowledge.
"Humph, come see me next week, we'll see how much you actually know." He grunted before limping off.
Quirrell was levitated off and arrested by Amelia's Aurors despite Dumbledore's protestations. Harry had a feeling he was more worried about what he would reveal under Veritiserum… like horcruxes.
Over the next few days things began to calm down. Harry was excused from answering questions regarding Quirrell as The Hat was able to claim knowledge.
Hagrid and Silvanus Kettleburn had taken to feeding and caring for the troll. At Harry's suggestion they were trying a reward and punishment system. Ice-cold water sprayed on its face when it was bad and food if good.
So far Professor McGonagall had been down to Hagrid's hut five times in two days to fix it.
By the end of the following week Harry was called into a meeting with Professor Flitwick.
"Harry, thank you so much for coming." Filius said sincerely.
"Wait… I'm not in trouble?" He asked, he was generally only called to a teacher's office for getting in trouble. In his previous timeline it was by McGonagall.
"Of course not, I… that is to say, we the teachers, need your help."
"You want the armour to help in class?"
"Want larger classrooms?"
"N- actually we wouldn't say no to that one but that's not why I called you here, we-"
"Want a pay rise… you know I don't actually control that sort of thing?"
Filius snorted at the far too innocent look on Harry's face. "I highly doubt it. It's about Miss Granger."
"She seems to be doing well does she-"
"Harry! Don't get going again!" Filius warned.
"Again, I doubt it. Look, she keeps handing these essays in." He said as he handed over a rolled up piece of parchment.
Harry unfurled it slightly. "I remember this one. What was it… ah yes, two feet on why we can't use the levitation spell on ourselves."
"Open the whole thing." Filius instructed dryly.
Harry released the bottom and raised an eyebrow as six feet of parchment fell to the ground.
"Huh… with this amount I would have thought she had actually found a way to disprove the topic." Harry muttered.
"You have to help us, Harry. We can't be expected to let her do this but we don't want to ruin her record by marking her down for it. She could well be the smartest witch since your mother!"
"Can't you just talk to her?" Harry asked.
"We are worried about hurting her and making her lose the will to work to her usual standards."
Harry just stared at the diminutive professor.
"What a load of sh-"
"Well it's true!"
"It is not." Filius said petulantly.
"What's the real reason? We both know that a student often needs a kick to the ego, what's so different about Hermione?" Harry challenged.
Filius shuffled like a five-year-old caught with his hand in the biscuit tin. He mumbled something.
"I said she always manages to argue her point." He huffed.
"Are you telling me, that an eleven-year-old girl manages to outsmart a group of highly educated professors with decades of experience dealing with people like her? What did you do about my mother?"
"Lily was completely different. She didn't come to us with all the knowledge, she came to us for the knowledge. She soaked it up and quickly understood it and then proceeded to move forward on her own.
"Miss Granger has read all the books and has a fairly decent understanding but she tends to simply regurgitate facts at a rapid pace. We wondered if perhaps she was a natural Occlumens."
"Are you telling me you are afraid of her ego?"
"That girl is scary!"
Harry couldn't help but being reminded of Ron in his previous timeline.
"Look, if you want, I'll hold your hand whilst we confront the big bad school girl." Harry teased.
"Watch it Potter, I still control your grades." Filius glared with the same light-heartedness in his eyes.
"Pfft, like I have any intention of working anywhere but here. I intend to be a full time landlord." Harry said dismissively.
"Hi Harry. Come to study?"
"No Hermione, I have been sent by Filius to talk to you." Harry said as sat down in the library at her table.
"I mean Professor Flitwick." Harry said as he realised his mistake.
"Harry! You should treat the Professors with respect!"
"I do, I just have a different relationship with them." Harry shrugged.
"Is this about your being Lord Slytherin?"
"No… well, partly. This has more to do with the favours they keep asking of me."
"Well, talking to you for a start."
"You only talk to me because the professors asked you to?" Hermione's insecurities were highly evident.
"Nope, I meant they asked me to talk to you about something specific. They seem to think that because we are friends you will listen to me more than if they tried it." It was a blatant lie but Filius had threatened him with all manner of hexes if he said the teachers were scaredy cats.
"Oh… what did they need?"
"You to stop writing mammoth sized essays."
"I write what they ask about." She said defensively.
"Hermione, do you consider yourself a good and well behaved student?" Harry asked.
Clearly offended she replied. "Of course I do!"
"And what does it mean to be a good and well-behaved student?"
"Learn what you are taught and follow the rules set by the teachers." She recited.
"That includes following basic instructions?"
"Then can you explain why you can't follow a simple instruction like 'write two feet' for an essay, why do you write six feet?"
Hermione bristled. "I wrote what I felt was necessary!"
"You were showing off." Harry said bluntly.
"I was not! I was showing that I had learnt what I was taught."
Harry laughed. "I read that essay you gave Professor Flitwick, there was fourth year work in it. If you want to be moved ahead a year then talk to the Professors. At the moment you are more likely to be kept back a year."
Hermione was horrified. "What! Why?"
"If you can't prove that you can follow simple first year instructions, how can they believe you will be able to follow fourth year instructions?"
Hermione paled at that.
"Besides, it's very unfair and rude to the teachers."
"Because you expect them to dedicate extra time to your work and ignore the other students. If a teacher says do two feet and you do six, that means that at least two other students might suffer as a result of your over-achieving and showing off."
Harry knew he was being fairly blunt and abrasive, but he was also annoyed that Filius had done a runner at the library entrance. Of course by now the half-goblin should have realised that the Castle wouldn't let him into any of the rooms.
"But I enjoy writing more! I want to learn more." She cried. Fortunately Harry had thrown up the muffliato and a few privacy charms so no one noticed.
"Then ask the Professors if you can test out of the first year." Harry shrugged.
"Are you going to do that?" She asked as she wiped her eyes.
"Nope." Harry grinned. "I am going to enjoy the fact that I am ahead and relax and enjoy being eleven. I never got to be a child growing up so I want to enjoy what I can."
"How can you not be a child growing up?" She asked.
"You may learn that when you are older, it is not something that someone learns before a certain age, it has nothing to do with intelligence." He said warningly.
Harry didn't really believe Hermione wasn't ready to learn about his history, he just didn't want to talk about it and felt he could use it as another lesson for her. She had always shown advanced mental maturity in his previous time, and he had seen glimpses of it this time.
"Actually, just a thought, but why don't you ask Professor McGonagall and Flitwick if you can start the third year elective courses now. That way you can be ahead in some of the exams."
"Why not do all of them now?" Hermione asked with an unholy gleam in her eye.
"Jeeze, 'Mione, don't over achieve so much. Take the time to be a child."
"Why? It won't help me later on in life." She huffed.
"Really? What if you decide to have children? What if you decide to work in a field that involves interacting with children? You won't do very well if you don't know how to be a child." Harry had a thought that made him smile triumphantly. "This is your research project! Learning how to be a child. You seem capable of memorizing facts and even do pretty well at casting spells, but now you need to learn how to enjoy life."
"Is this like when Mum said I had to take P.E. classes because it would help me grow as a person?"
"Sort of, although there is less changing clothes in changing rooms and climbing of ropes." Harry admitted. "And there is no real grading system."
Harry couldn't help but laugh at the look of distaste on her face.
*Chapter 4*: Chapter 4
Having dealt with Quirrell, Harry realised he had most of the year to try and deal with the more important things, like Sirius. He also wanted to try and grab some of the horcruxes including the one Lucius had.
The one in the Room of Requirement was fairly simple for him to access but he decided it was safer where it was for the moment until he could deal with the Basilisk in the Chamber of secrets.
So he focused on Sirius and decided to leave horcruxes as a summer project. As long as it didn't interrupt his fun.
The thing was that he needed a way to reveal Pettigrew. The little rat bastard was comfortably relaxing in the luxury of the Gryffindor Boys Dorm whilst his godfather wasted away in hell.
Of course Peter did have to deal with Ron's snoring, but it wasn't that much of a consolation.
Harry had the start of a plan. He needed to get access to the Map and Remus Lupin.
First step involved getting hold of the Map. Fairly simple.
He just had to corner the twins and convince them it was his.
Harry knew he had to act quickly and quietly. He needed the element of surprise.
Silencing charms on the unsuspecting targets followed by two stunners.
He then levitated one target on top of the other and then levitated them both into a nearby classroom.
Now he had to do the hard part. Talk to them.
He chickened out.
Fred Weasley groggily sat up from the cold hard stone floor of the classroom he found himself in. He rubbed his eyes as he tried to work through the headache. He heard a groan to his left and noticed his twin.
"George, wake up." He muttered tiredly.
"Tell mum I'm sick." George groaned as he rolled over.
This made Fred wake up a bit more so he jammed a finger in his brother's side. "Get up you great pillock! We aren't at home."
"We aren't?" He asked as he sat up and looked around. "Oh, right. What happened?"
"How would I know? I just woke up!" Fred snapped irritably. "Where are we?"
"I was thinking a little more specific." Fred said dryly.
"Merlin you're useless. Check the bloody map."
George slowly went through his pockets until he found a piece of parchment.
"I solemnly swear I am up to no good." He intoned. "Fred… either this isn't the map or something went drastically wrong."
"What?" Fred asked as he looked over his brother's shoulder.
There on the parchment was a letter. Not the usual greeting or the familiar animated map.
'Dear Fred and George,
First, allow me to congratulate you on continuing the proud tradition of pranking at Hogwarts. You have brought laughter to these halls and that is the code of a true prankster.
But I must warn you not to be malicious with your pranks, a prank that causes pain, be it emotional or physical, is no prank but an act of assault and bullying.
I apologise for the way in which I have retrieved the map, it is a family heirloom and I prefer to remain anonymous at this time. If I manage to duplicate this map I will happily supply you with a copy.
I look forward to more of your work.
Son of Prongs
PS: Have you ever thought about pranking each other?'
"Sweet merciful Merlin!" Fred gasped. "We were in the presence of the Son of a Marauder!"
George was a little more annoyed. "But he took the map!"
"Technically it was his, we were just lucky to use it all this time."
"But we need that map!" He whined.
"We survived before we found it and we can survive now. Pull yourself together man!" Fred snapped as he shook his twin by the shoulders.
Harry snarled as he watched the little footprints of Peter Pettigrew remain stationary in the boy's dorm. It was obvious the little bastard was sleeping peacefully.
Harry had decided that now was the time to enact the next part of his plan.
Harry knocked on the door of Professor Flitwick's office.
"Professor? Do you have some free time?" Harry asked nervously.
Filius gave him a shrewd look. "School work or personal?"
"Then drop the meek little boy act and get in here." He smirked.
Harry just rolled his eyes. "It is not an act." He said as he slouched over to the chair opposite the desk.
"Around me it is and definitely around the Headmaster. Now, what brings you to my office this evening?"
"Well, you've said a few times that my parents were favourite students of yours, that you were my mother's mentor. But other than Hagrid telling me they were heroes and not dead-beat drunks who died in a car crash like my uncle said… I don't know anything about them." Harry said timidly.
Filius could see that Harry was sincere. He could also see a trip to Harry's uncle in his future… possibly with a large contingent of the magical population wanting justice for their saviour. But he realised Harry wouldn't want his life story spread all over the world.
He would just enlist Amelia and Poppy… maybe Minerva.
"You are unusual in the Wizarding World Harry. Not because of the fame and fortune but because you are the only orphan of the war that was not placed with magical relatives or magical guardians. You should never have been placed with muggles… Albus Dumbledore has a lot to answer for." He groused. "I could tell you plenty about your parents. Especially your mother. Minerva would be better to tell you about your father though as she was his godmother."
Harry saw an opening. "Did I have a godmother or godfather?"
Filius scowled. "Your godmother was Neville Longbottom's mother, a lovely girl and although she was incapacitated in the war, by rights you would have grown up with Neville under his family's care, Augusta Longbottom is a formidable woman who would have treated you well and raised you right."
Filius paused, looking for the right way to continue. "Your official godfather was Sirius Black. He was like a brother to your father, thick as thieves and twice as crafty!" He smirked. "He was cast out by his own family and the Potters took him in as one of their own. Which is why the world was stunned when he betrayed you and your parents!" He finished as he slammed his tiny fist onto his desk making Harry jump. "I'm sorry, Harry." Filius said weakly. "Lilly was my apprentice, she was going to be my replacement here at Hogwarts, we loved her so much and it hurt us all deeply when she was brutally taken from us." Filius wiped a tear from his cheek.
"Do you have any pictures sir?" Harry asked after a while.
"I might have some somewhere." Filius frowned. He slid off his chair, which was piled with books to make him tall enough to see over his desk. He moved to a door behind his desk.
Harry sat there waiting for a few seconds.
"Do come in Harry." Filius' voice sounded.
Harry left his own seat and walked into the room. He soon realised it was the Professor's living quarters. Harry suddenly felt like an intruder.
"Over here." Came Filius' choked voice.
Harry looked and saw the tiny professor sitting on a stool and staring a baby's playpen. There were stuffed toys, educational toys, even a baby bottle.
Professor Flitwick's voice was raspy and chocked full of emotion as he spoke. "You were such a wonderful distraction Harry. We would happily ignore her studies whilst we entertained you with magic. Our own theoretical discussions on charms would devolve into how they could be applied to make your toys dance and live just to see you giggle."
The tears dripped silently onto the hard stone floor as Harry stood there in shock. He had come to get information on his godfather but he had discovered a lost uncle instead.
On the mantle of the fireplace were pictures of Filius and baby Harry, Filius, baby Harry and Lilly, Lilly and baby Harry, James, Lilly and baby Harry and so on.
Harry gingerly stepped forward, he felt like he had invaded the inner sanctum of a holy place.
Then the smell of the baby toys and playpen hit him.
His scent memory was triggered.
"Mama." He whispered in awe.
Filius looked up at the childlike utterance. He put an arm around the young boy's shoulder and pulled him against his much smaller frame. "We missed you both so much, Harry. Come, let me show you my memories."
When Filius retired for the evening he was physically and emotionally exhausted. He had reconnected with his long lost honorary nephew and it had been something he needed as he felt refreshed now.
But he had found his plans to visit the Dursleys had been cast in steel as he discovered that the photos in his personal rooms were the first time Harry had ever laid eyes on his parents.
After the emotional turmoil of discovering the close familial connection he held with Filius Flitwick, Harry decided to wait a while before trying to get more information. He didn't want to push Filius.
He was fairly surprised when at breakfast just before the Christmas Holidays, a suit of armour came marching up to him and deposited a small cloth bag in his hand.
Harry frowned but inspected the contents by peaking in.
Harry gulped. "Don't suppose you could explain the whys and wherefores of this?" He asked hopefully.
To Harry's amusement, the suit tilted its head as if thinking before raising a metal gloved finger in the universal sign of 'wait a moment'.
At this point Dumbledore decided to make a nuisance of himself again. "Harry my boy, might I enquire as to what the castle has delivered you?" He asked in his grandfatherly manner.
Harry sighed before he looked over to Professor McGonagall at the staff table. "Professor, he's being rude again!"
"I was quite polite!" Albus declared offended.
"Albus Dumbledore, why are you bothering Lord Slytherin again?" She demanded as she stormed over.
"I was merely enquiring as to what the suit of armour had given him." He explained calmly.
"He was far too familiar with me, called me 'Harry' and 'my boy'." Harry scowled. "Most unbecoming for the Chief Warlock if you ask me." He declared snobbishly.
There were times she thought Harry James Potter was a little too James-ish. But he wasn't wrong.
"Lord Slytherin is quite right, he has given you the option to call him 'Mister Potter' but you completely disrespect his station as a Lord and as a student. Furthermore, there are no laws or rules that allow us to inspect a student's belongings or mail without good cause. Do you have good cause, Albus?"
"Mister Potter is a well known celebrity, there is always a chance that he has been given something harmful, something booby trapped."
Harry started snickering. "He said 'booby'."
The other boys started snickering as the girls either rolled their eyes or scowled. Sometimes both.
Minerva just glared at Albus.
"If the castle is giving Lord Slytherin dangerous or harmful items then I think we have far bigger problems that would involve shutting down the school. Have you seen evidence that the school has begun hurting students?"
"Of course not! Hogwarts is perfectly safe-"
"Then bugger off!" Harry said exasperatedly.
"Language Mister Potter!" Minerva snapped.
At this point a second suit of armour arrived with the Sorting Hat.
"What is the meaning of this?" Albus demanded. "My office is private and locked!"
"Your office is part of the castle, you are granted access because the castle recognises you as the Headmaster. That can easily be changed." The Hat warned. "Harry, put me on please."
"I would feel much better if we could all hear what you have to say." Albus objected.
Harry glared at him. "Tough." He stated before he jammed the hat on his head. "Alright, why do I now hold the Philosopher's Stone in my hand?"
"The danger has passed and it poses too much temptation to keep it here in the school. Not that we approve of Albus' little trap. Far too reckless." The Hat said beneath the privacy charms.
"Ok, but why do I have it?"
"Because the castle cannot act outside of its own geographical area, it requires you to act on its behalf."
"So… what? Send it back to Nicholas Flamel?"
"I suppose." The Hat said airily. "Or you could keep it in your vaults at Gringotts or just destroy it. As long as it isn't here the castle will be happy."
"I definitely don't want another target on my back. I'll try and contact Flamel and see what he wants done. I also want to know why he agreed to this little farce."
Harry took the Hat off his head and shook out his hair.
He turned to address Professor McGonagall. "I'm going to need to visit Gringotts straight away, castle business."
"May I ask the nature of the business?" She asked with a frown.
"You may, in private, at the bank. I will need Madam Bones to be there as well."
"Perhaps I should accompany you as well." Albus offered, he really needed to get control of this situation. Whatever it might be.
"You aren't invited." Harry snapped. "Professor, we should leave now."
"I really must insist, if this is sch-" Albus quickly backed up when the nearest suit of armour took a menacing step towards him.
"MISTER POTTER! I insist you call off the armour!"
"Look, Dumbledore, you can't have it both ways. If I control the armour then I must be Lord Slytherin. But you keep saying I'm not, so that means I don't control the armour. Make up your mind but do it away from me!" Harry said angrily as he stomped off leaving his unfinished breakfast behind.
The Slytherin students had to smirk at the way Harry had put the Headmaster down. He had given him a damned if you do, damned if you don't situation. Potter currently held all the cards.
"Harry, why am I being dragged out of my office this morning?" Amelia asked wearily as she walked up to the young Lord Slytherin and Professor McGonagall outside Gringotts.
"Can't tell you until we get inside Gringotts and a private room." Harry shrugged as he lifted the brim of the hat up so he could see.
Amelia wanted to ask why, but she thought, after a moment's consideration that the answer was obvious, it was sensitive information.
The exact reason was revealed when they passed ten paces beyond the large entrance to hear a scuffle behind them. They turned to see Albus Dumbledore being held at spear point by a group of very irritated goblin guards. He had tried to sneak in invisibly and goblins really don't like that!
"Has Alastor Moody been by to visit you?" Amelia asked worriedly.
"Nope, why?" Harry asked with his perfected innocent smile.
"Because your paranoia seems like his fault."
"It's not paranoia if they're really out to get you!" Harry objected.
"You are far too young to have people 'out for you'!"
"Amelia! You do remember what happened on Halloween?" Minerva gasped.
"Right, of course." Amelia admitted with a sigh.
Harry just smirked and headed for the nearest goblin teller. "I need to speak to someone about claiming the Slytherin Vaults." He snapped in a very business-like fashion that bordered on rude.
Needless to say Minerva was about to reprimand Harry but Amelia laid a calming hand on her arm.
"You think you are the first human to come demanding such things? Do you know what we do to thieves?" The goblin snarled.
"No, but if you keep me from my vaults for any longer than necessary I'll find out when I have you branded a thief." Harry drawled.
That one brought the goblin up short. Normally the wizard would have started ranting about how they were superior and how goblins should be grateful for the honour of serving wizards.
None of them ever actually threw goblin threats straight back at them.
"I've got the Head of the DMLE and the Deputy Head of Hogwarts here. I'm sure they will be happy to testify about how I was accused without evidence." Harry continued. "Now either you do your job or you… well… I'll let you know when I figure it out, but I doubt it will be good for you!"
The goblin was about to make another comeback but Amelia stepped in. "Master goblin, Hogwarts herself has declared Harry James Potter the Heir of Slytherin. Surely that will be enough to see the vaults to check his claims."
The goblin would have rolled its eyes if it were human. If the wizards weren't insulting them and looking down on them they were being sickeningly polite. It was a trait often seen in first generation magicals who thought goblins might respond better to politeness.
"It's that or I'll put the Sword of Gryffindor through your throat and find another teller." Harry snarled.
"You would challenge me to a duel?!" The goblin asked in shock. "A duel with melee weapons?"
"Are you deaf? Look you stupid idiot, get a move on or-" Harry paused as he whipped the Hat off his head and plunged his hand into it withdrawing the gleaming silver sword.
The goblin gulped as it found the sword pressed at its throat.
"Yes or no, you gonna be more helpful?" Harry demanded.
Harry leaned in menacingly. "Then why are you still here?"
The goblin squeaked before backing away carefully then turning tail and running.
"Harry James Potter! What the devil did you just do?" Amelia demanded as she tried to revive Minerva.
"I am not a fan of goblins." Harry stated dryly.
"And you felt the need to start a war with them? You do realise the penalty for drawing a weapon in Gringotts is death?"
"Actually, the penalty is for drawing a wand." The Hat corrected. "Drawing a sword is a whole different kettle of fish."
"By Merlin, the Sword of Gryffindor!" Minerva gasped in awe as she finally came too. "Where did you find it? It has been lost for centuries."
"That is a question I want answered as well." Came a high pitched voice. Harry turned to see a very well dressed goblin with guards surrounding him. "That sword is Goblin property and you will return it at once!"
"Like hell! I found it and I'll keep it, that or you will give me a replacement sword of equal value." Harry objected as he swung the sword back round to point at the new goblin.
Minerva's hand went to her wand as the spears the guards held were instantly lowered threateningly towards Harry, but Amelia quickly stayed her hand.
"I'm sure Lord Slytherin doesn't mean to offend-"
"Oh yes I do!" Harry interrupted Amelia. He was still sore over being betrayed by Griphook. The little bastard. "In fact, if you don't start showing some respect I'll challenge you directly to a duel. No seconds or champions, just you and me, to the death!"
"HARRY!" Minerva screeched.
Harry wasn't being entirely reckless. He had just taken the time to assess the goblins as warriors since their betrayal during his horcrux hunt. Even at eleven years old, he still towered over them, his arms and legs were much more suited to physical combat. He couldn't understand why Wizards got caught up in so many wars with them when they could pick them up by the scruffs of their necks and toss them in the sea.
Whilst this was going on, the tellers had ushered the other customers out of the bank and sealed the doors. The mighty thump of the doors closing caused Amelia and Minerva to jump.
"Oh Merlin, we are going to die." Minerva whimpered.
"Well goblin? Will you show me a little respect and honour or shall we throw down and duel?" Harry asked.
A slow smile crept onto the goblin's face. "I like you. Most human children are scared of us. They think of us as villains. The adults think of us as servants.
"But tell me child, do you honestly think you could defeat all of my guards to get to me?"
"Yeah, I do. But your question makes me doubt your honour. I thought goblins were all about honour. You wouldn't be very good bankers without it."
There was a loud groan from the Sorting Hat. "Harry, don't you pay any attention in A History of Magic?
"The reason for all the goblin wars is because they kept trying to cheat and steal wizard's money!"
"Then why do we keep giving it back?" Harry asked incredulously. He was not ashamed to admit that the only attention he paid in that class was to the back of his eyelids.
"Because goblins are formidable warriors, their battle magic's are too powerful for ours!" Amelia snapped. "Every time we draw up a peace treaty they demand to be in control of our gold!"
"You should listen to your females child." The goblin sneered. "Drop the sword and leave, we will take your gold as recompense and we will spare your lives."
Minerva and Amelia didn't like the sound of that. "Surely we can come to an agreement, Master Goblin." Minerva pleaded.
"Yeah." Harry nodded, his sword never wavering. "How about this, you give me everything that is in every one of my accounts and I won't chop off your head." He pushed the sword forward quickly and it dug into the goblin's throat causing his eyes to widen.
"You wouldn't dare!"
"Why? Afraid to die? I thought you were a warrior." Harry taunted.
"My guards will cut you down."
"But you'll still be dead."
"You value your life so little human?"
"No, I just value yours far less." Harry smiled.
"What about the lives of your females?" He moved to snap his fingers but Harry jerked the sword.
"Ah! No, you move you die." Harry warned.
"Madam Bones and Professor McGonagall are about to be rescued by the armies of Hogwarts." The Hat spoke up.
"Hogwarts has no armies, it's a school!"
"You keep telling yourself that." Harry laughed. He was bluffing at this point. He didn't want to, but he would kill the goblins. He had no idea what the Hat meant by armies of Hogwarts though.
"There they are now." The Hat said blandly.
"I imagine it will only take them about twenty minutes to break down the doors."
*RUFF RUFF RUFF* *AAARRRROOOOGGGG*
"Fluffy and the troll."
"I'M A COMING HARRY!"
"And Hagrid, apparently."
"So the army of Hogwarts consists of a Cerberus, a troll and a half giant?" Harry asked.
"Not to mention the one hundred and fifty odd suits of armour." The Hat corrected. "And Albus Dumbledore… for all his faults he takes his role as Headmaster seriously."
"Thank Merlin." Minerva breathed.
"Well, what do you think? Gonna start behaving now?" Harry asked.
The goblin growled. "Fine! Put the sword away and we will discuss terms."
"You first. And send someone to open the doors or they will keep banging away!"
"Why should we move first?!"
"Because you still have the home advantage, my army is stuck outside, plus I am the only one on my side willing to kill you.
"And I have a sword at your throat." Harry twisted the blade a little just to put a little point on his argument.
"How about an Unbreakable Vow?" The Hat suggested.
The goblin grimaced. "We do not sully ourselves with human magic."
"A blood contract?"
"We could agree to that." The goblin said grudgingly.
"Then send one of your goblins to bring the required instruments and we will draw up a simple blood contract." The Hat ordered.
The goblin gave a slight jerk and another goblin ran off.
"What will the contract say?" Amelia enquired.
"Simple is best. That if either party attempts to act against the other in a detrimental way then they will forfeit their life." The Hat explained.
"He signs on behalf of the goblin nation." Harry demanded.
"And you sign on behalf of yours."
"I don't have a nation. So I can't."
"You claim to be Lord Slytherin, you can claim to sign on behalf of all your holdings."
"In that case we need to put in a clause about individuals acting without the knowledge or approval of the signatories." Amelia warned. "Some of Harry's vassals are the worst type." She said as she thought of all the people who swore allegiance to Lord No-Name.
"Deal!" Both Harry and the goblin agreed.
Outside the bank Severus Snape was having a very conflicted time. On the one hand he was infuriated that his slave bound body was forced to head to the bank in order to save its new master. On the other hand, he was actually enjoying using some of the most vicious spells he knew to try and break down the doors of the most loathed creatures on the planet just shy of the Dementors.
What made it worse was the proud and approving smile that Dumbledore had given him when his body had opened its mouth and told the aging man that they were there to rescue Potter. He had never wanted to die so badly before in his life.
"THA' DOORS ARE CRACKIN'!" Came the jubilant cry of Hagrid followed by an answering roar of simple enjoyment from the half-giant's pet troll.
Whilst Albus and Severus along with a contingent of Aurors cast all manner of blasting hexes and the like, the suits of armour had brought a battering ram with them. Somewhere deep in the bowels of the castle, the weapons of war still sat. How they got to the bank was still a mystery.
"JUS' A FEW MORE WHACKS!"
There was a cloud of dust that gradually settled revealing that they hadn't so much as managed to smash the doors open as blast them off their hinges. There was a cheer of triumph from the Aurors, although truth be told, they hadn't been very effective as the doors were warded against magic.
Severus wanted to curse as his traitorous body didn't wait but sprang through the massive doorway. He might have actually succeeded in dying of shame had he seen the beaming smile on Dumbledore's face. The old man truly believed that Severus had grown beyond his petty grudge and had come to care for the son of his late rival.
"Stand down! Stand down!" Came the voice of Amelia Bones as she walked through the dust.
"Is 'Arry alright?" Hagrid asked.
"Lord Slytherin is perfectly alright. He has arranged a treaty with the goblins and he is taking care of some personal business. He should be back shortly."
"Thank Merlin." Albus sighed.
"Why did the goblins attack him?" Auror Shacklebot asked.
"They didn't, he attacked them." Amelia growled.
"Is he insane?" Another Auror asked incredulously.
Amelia was about to scold the Auror… but she couldn't really justify it considering Harry's actions.
"Alright, everything's sorted." Harry said as he walked out of the bank with a very pale and shaky Minerva McGonagall trailing behind him.
"My b- err… Mister Potter, what exactly happened here?" Dumbledore asked.
"Goblins tried to cheat me I negotiated an agreement. Fairly simple really." Harry shrugged.
"You negotiated with the goblins?" Shacklebot asked sceptically.
"Sure, once they saw my point they were quite eager to talk." Harry grinned.
"I need to get back to the castle." Minerva muttered. "I need a stiff drink."
"Well, I'm finished here. Let's get going then." Harry said as he clapped his hands.
"Harry, I'll be round tonight so you can tell me what you were going to." Amelia said.
"Sure, I'll be waiting." Harry nodded as he took Minerva by the elbow and led her back to the Leaky Cauldron and the floo.
"Uncle Fil, you in here?" Harry called as he entered the charms classroom.
Since the revelations about how close he and his mother had been to Professor Flitwick Harry had begun calling him 'Uncle Fil' in private. Filius had just laughed and hugged him, it still brought a tear to his eye.
"In here Harry." Came the reply from his quarters.
"Hi, I need some help." Harry said as he plopped onto the edge of the bed.
"I believe the long term ward at St. Mungo's might be able to help." Filius said dryly.
Harry winced. "Heard about Gringotts, huh?"
"I can't believe you actually challenged the king… and to not only come away without a scratch but with all your money and a treaty? It beggars belief Harry."
"I also found the Sword of Gryffindor?" Harry offered appeasingly.
"What do you need help with, Harry?" Filius decided to change the subject.
"Right, did you know some of the girls are in marriage contracts?"
"Yes, it's a custom used by purebloods to ensure their inbred-ness." He said dryly.
Harry just smiled widely at his uncle's joke. "But did you know most of the girls don't want to be in those contracts?"
"Of course. We've all seen the change in Miss Parkinson."
"I need your help to communicate with the Death Eater fathers and force them to cancel the contracts and prevent them making new ones."
Filius had a very serious look on his face. "Harry, as noble as that is, the only way around that is for you to take the contracts for yourself."
"Couldn't I buy the girls or adopt them into my family so I control who they can marry?"
"You'd have to spend a whole lot of money and I doubt there is much in the Slytherin vaults."
"Well… I can easily make money." Harry said hesitantly. "I did just acquire the Philosophers Stone after all."
"Ah! So that is why you decided to turn the Goblin and Wizarding worlds on their head this morning." Filius smiled. "Do the goblins know you have the stone?"
"No, and they won't." Harry said adamantly. "I don't keep any of my stuff at Gringotts anymore."
"What about all your money, your family's belongings are in one of the vaults there."
"Not anymore. I took it out of the vault this morning. It's sitting in the room where the Stone was being kept and guarded by some armour. I'm not letting those cheats get the better of me!"
"Do you know how to use the Philosophers Stone to make gold?"
"Not a clue!" Harry grinned. "But I figure Flamel owes me for putting my school in danger."
"I'll draft a letter." Filius sighed.
*Chapter 5*: Chapter 5
Harry had forgotten about some upcoming events from his first year. Specifically Norbert. Everything was piling up and he was limited by the fact that he was stuck in an eleven-year-old body with next to no authority. Not that he ever had any authority before.
He needed help and there was only one person he trusted.
"Come in Harry."
Harry hoisted his satchel, set his shoulders and marched into the private quarters of the charms teacher.
"What can I do for you?" Filius smiled.
"I need to tell you some things, but first… I need you to follow me." Harry said seriously as the Sorting Hat sat on his head.
"Follow you where?"
"Just follow the boy Professor. All will be explained." The Hat said firmly.
Filius frowned but nodded. "Very well, lead on."
Harry and the hat led Filius to the first floor girl's bathroom.
"Harry, we can't go in there!" Filius admonished.
Harry smiled sadly. "Only Myrtle will be in there." He said as he pushed open the door and entered.
Filius was surprised when two suits of armour moved to either side of the door and took up guard positions.
He scurried in quickly and froze as he heard a strange hissing noise come from Harry's mouth. He then stumbled backwards as the sinks slid away to reveal a large gaping hole in the ground that led into nothing.
"Merlin's beard!" Filius exclaimed.
Harry grinned at him. "Come on Uncle." He then jumped into the hole.
"Oh… bugger." Filius grumbled. "Oh well, in for a Knut in for a Galleon." He said before he followed his honorary nephew into the hole.
Filius was surprised to find his descent slow when he hit a smooth pipe that acted like a slide. It was a long ride that ended with a lot of bone crunching. Fortunately they weren't his bones. All around him were the bones of small animals.
"Harry, where are we?" He asked cautiously as he pulled his wand.
"Could you cast a light and then check for listening charms on us both and down here. I'm just going to close the entrance." Harry said seriously.
Harry was rarely serious. Even when dealing with idiots like Fudge and Dumbledore he had a hint of mischief in his eyes.
He quickly conjured some candles and lit them before checking himself and Harry for charms. He could hear the sound of grinding stone as the sinks way above them moved back into position.
"We are clean, now what is going on." Filius demanded impatiently.
"I am from the future." Harry said simply. "Something happened to me and I was thrown back to my younger self. I am actually eighteen years old but in an eleven-year-old body."
"Time-Turners don't have that range." Filius countered.
"He didn't use one." The Hat spoke up. "What happened to him is a rare occurrence. The likes of which have only happened to Rowena Ravenclaw and one other, as far as I know. He has been given a second chance to correct the mistakes of his first attempt at life."
"What mistakes?" Filius asked warily.
"Doing things without the right information for starters." Harry shrugged. "In my original life I never knew about Quirrell until I had to stop him at the end of the year, three first years with only a year's training had to defeat the world's most evil wizard.
"This time I made the plan."
"That was a terrible plan." Filius said firmly.
"But it was a fun plan!"
"Harry… you have proof?"
"Well, I have knowledge." Harry said carefully. "Hopefully I have enough knowledge to convince you I'm not lying."
"I don't believe you are lying Harry, I just need proof that you are not suffering a form of insanity." Filius said seriously.
"Would knowledge of the Chamber of Secrets and its monster be proof enough?"
"This is the Chamber of Secrets?" Filius asked incredulously.
"This is just the entrance. The Chamber is behind another Parselmouth door down that tunnel."
"Parselmouth! That's what the hissing was." Filius said excitedly.
"Yes, I can talk to snakes. When everyone finds out they will think I am the Heir of Slytherin." Harry rolled his eyes in annoyance.
"You are the Heir or Slytherin." Filius pointed out.
"Yes, by conquest, not because Tom had a kid… not even sure if he could have a kid. Ew! Now I have images of Snakey and Lestrange getting it on!" Harry started jumping around and gagging in disgust.
"Focus Harry." Filius admonished.
"Right, well the basilisk is this way." Harry said as he marched off.
"Shh! These caves aren't that steady. Last time I was here there was a cave in." Harry cringed as he fearfully watched the ceiling, expecting it to fall at any time.
"Why the devil are we going in to face a Basilisk alone?" Filius hissed as jogged up to Harry. "How in Merlin's name did you manage to defeat one?"
"Well last time I was twelve, this thing is a thousand years old, sixty feet long and was being controlled by the shade of a very young Tom Riddle.
"I also had the Sword of Gryffindor and Fawkes."
"And me." The Hat added.
"Oh yes, Hat was here too, he came with Fawkes and the sword." Harry nodded causing said hat to bob on his hat.
"So it was Fawkes who defeated the snake." Filius sighed in slight relief.
"Gods no!" The Hat chuckled. "Fawkes simply blinded it. Harry stabbed it in the mouth with the sword."
"That really hurt." Harry grimaced. "I really don't want to try that again." He said as he rubbed his arm.
"Again, I must ask why we are going alone!" Filius demanded as they passed a really big snakeskin.
"Wouldn't want anyone else to get hurt. Besides, without Tom here I am hoping to reason with it." Harry admitted.
"What about the armour? They could be a great asset." The sound crunchy bones under his feet was not helping Filius' courage.
"Don't worry, this is just a test run so we can feel the basilisk out. If we need backup we can use a rooster."
"Why didn't you use a rooster last time?"
"There was a student possessed by Tom. They killed all the roosters." Harry shrugged as they came to a stop outside the large vault like door. "Ok eyes down. The Hat is going to be our eyes."
"This is the most ridiculous and ill-conceived idea I have ever been a part of." Filius muttered unhappily. He still closed his eyes though.
Filius shivered as he heard the snake-like sounds coming out of Harry's mouth. He nearly wet himself as he heard the grinding of the door as it opened.
"Come on, it won't be too hard to deal with." Harry insisted.
They walked a few metres before Harry scared his uncle again with Parselmouth.
"Speak to me, Slytherin, greatest of the Hogwarts Four. Bloody egotist." Harry muttered in English as the stone mouth of Slytherin's statue opened with a horrific grinding noise.
"The pass phrase to open the snakes home is 'Speak to me, Slytherin, greatest of the Hogwarts Four.' Like I said, he's a bloody egotist."
"Language Harry. That is what I was referring to."
"Oh it's called Parselmouth only-"
"You know quite well I was referring to your swearing, young man." Filius interrupted.
The entire conversation was being made with bowed heads and a lack of eye contact.
Filius thought he had heard the last of the terrifying noises for the day. Crunching bones, grinding stones and his young adopted nephew hissing like a snake…
Of course he'd never heard the sound of a sixty-foot snake slithering out of its hidey-hole before.
"WHO ENTERS MY MASTER'S CHAMBER?"
"Harry?" Filius queried nervously.
"I do, the Heir of Slytherin and now Lord Slytherin." Harry answered proudly. "And stop shouting."
"Harry, what is going on?"
"I'm just introducing myself."
"You do not smell like my master." The snake hissed slightly quieter.
"I defeated him. Many times, now magic has bestowed me with all that was his."
The god-awful sound that Filius heard next was that of a sixty foot, thousand year old basilisk chuckling. Filius had no idea that that was what was happening.
"What do I care what your petty little magics say?" The snake asked snidely. "I am the King of Serpents! I would have crushed Salazar under my tail if he was not the one who hatched and raised me. It is a shame you are so small… I have not had a tasty meal in centuries… but now that I know my master is dead I am not bound by his laws. I will feast on the animals above us."
"I was afraid of this." Harry muttered.
"What?! What were you afraid of?" Filius squeaked in demand.
"Snakey doesn't recognise me as the successor. Wants to eat us." Harry shrugged nonchalantly.
"Hush, I'm not finished." He chastised. He turned back to the snake. "Are you certain you don't want to serve me?"
"I will serve no one. Salazaar's blood bathed my egg and I served him. But I do not recognise your blood so I will consume you."
"King of the Snakes huh?" Harry asked as he started rummaging around in his bag. "It's sad that something that claims to be so powerful can be taken down by something I eat for dinner." Harry pointed his wand in his bag and shouted. "SOLARIS!"
"*cough* You can look up now Uncle Fil, but mind your eyes, there's a lot of dust."
Filius Flitwick cautiously raised his head only to see a great big yellow eye looking back.
Filius Flitwick fainted.
"Come on Trev, I know it's not the best job in the world but surely you can do this one thing for me?"
Filius had no idea why Harry was in his chambers. He had no idea who 'Trev' was or why he too was in his chambers. He also couldn't fathom what job Harry wanted done in his chambers.
Filius made the mistake of opening his eyes.
He quickly shut them again.
He peeked through a cracked eyelid… nope, still there.
He'd thought the whole debacle of Harry taking him to the Chamber was a nightmare of some sort. It was a nightmare, just a real life nightmare if the dead eyes of a sixty-foot basilisk staring at him meant anything.
He realised that everything must be safe if Harry had left him there to sleep and was now conversing with another student. He gingerly picked himself off the floor.
"Harry… why do you have that toad… is that an egg? By Merlin what are you doing?"
Harry was sitting at a desk with a makeshift straw nest surrounding a chicken egg. Perched on top of the egg and held in place by Harry's hand was a toad. The whole mess was bathed in blood.
"I am trying to make a Basilisk. Trevor isn't being very cooperative though." Harry grumbled.
"Harry, please tell me that there is a logic behind this insanity."
"Probably, but for now I want a pet snake that can defend me." Harry said as his tongue poked out the side of his mouth in concentration whilst he tried to keep Trevor in place. "Hedwig is great and I love her but… I don't want to watch her die again. I just want an extra layer of protection and a basilisk is like a sentient weapon."
"And the blood?" Filius asked wearily as he conjured a chair opposite Harry at the desk.
"Old Snakey over there said something about Salazar's blood and how it recognised it. So I am bathing this egg in yours, mine and Neville's in the hopes that it will obey our instructions… or at least not attack you and Neville, it his toad after all."
"You took my blood?" It was more of a statement than question… and not a very appreciative one at that.
Harry just rolled his eleven-year-old eyes. "It's not like I was going to use it in a ritual to give Lord No-Name a new body because, trust me, been there, done that and it was sooo not worth it."
"I need Firewhiskey." Filius groaned as he let his head fall to the desk with a thud.
"Now, now, Uncle Fil. You can't drink alcohol around young children."
"I'll let you have some."
"Forget I said anything."
There was a sudden green glow emitted from the egg.
"Excellent! I was hoping that things would be sped up by magic." Harry said happily. "Nice work Trev."
Filius' head shot up. "How long have we been down here? It takes nearly three weeks for an egg to hatch."
"Can you imagine trying to keep a toad on a chicken egg for three weeks, Uncle Fil?" Harry scoffed. "I don't think Trevor would survive that long with the heat needed."
"Shouldn't we have some sort of protection though? We don't know anything about basilisks… not to mention the fact that this is all very illegal." Filius began to panic.
"Too late for that." Harry said with excitement as the egg began to crack.
Filius debated trying to grab Harry and run. But he decided that there was no way he could manage it even if he was able to stun the boy. Especially if he was as old and experienced as he claimed.
"Here little snakey." Harry hissed. "Come out and meet your new family."
"What are you saying Harry?" Filius asked nervously.
Harry wasn't sure how to answer that. "I'm… offering encouragement?" He tried.
"Papa. Papa." The little snake cried as it pushed its way out to the egg.
Harry was filled with pride. "Aw… it knows who his Pappy is- crap." Harry scowled. "I sound like Hagrid."
"Keep smiling Harry, you don't want to upset your new… child." Filius said as he stretched his mouth into the widest and fakest smile possible.
"Ah… slight problem."
"For Merlin's sake! Keep smiling!" Filius hissed in a panic.
"We just need to find some food, something I seem to have forgotten."
"Didn't you have a rooster in your bag?"
"This little guy is only thirty centimetres long… how is he going to eat a whole rooster?" Harry argued.
"Cut it into smaller pieces Harry! For goodness sake! Do something!"
Harry started to grumble quietly at the panicky half-goblin as he cast a stunner into his bag quickly. He had put a silencing charm on it already as he didn't want it accidentally crowing and killing his baby basilisk.
He then took it out and put it on the table and started cutting it up.
Which was probably not smart as it was still alive and the blood spurted everywhere. He and Filius were covered in blood.
"Tasty!" The little snake hummed as its tongue flickered out.
Filius looked to Harry with a curious glare.
Harry looked very sheepish. "You erm- really don't want to know what he said. Heh heh heh." He giggled nervously.
"Give me that damned bird." Filius hissed as he conjured a knife and started cutting it up.
A few minutes later and the ruler long snake was greedily working a leg into its unhinged jaw.
"Thank you Papas."
"Aw, he said thank you and thinks we are both its Daddies." Harry cooed.
"Harry, we need to have a long and serious talk." Filius said firmly as he cast cleaning charms on himself and Harry.
"Uncle Fil, do you really think I would do something as reckless as creating a basilisk without researching it thoroughly?" Harry sighed. "The Hat and I went through all of its knowledge of Salazar as well as the personal libraries in my quarters where Salazar's journals are kept."
"Salazar's journals?" Filius asked with wide eyes.
"Yes, and he was as twisted as you all believe him to be." The Hat said sourly. "I don't know what the other Founders were thinking when they decided to keep his house in the school. We should just be glad that Godric made me and defined the house traits otherwise Slytherin House would be full of psychopathic lunatics with a penchant for torture."
"Hat… that is pretty much what you've got now." Harry said slowly. "You just get the occasional good egg."
"They don't start off that way when I put them in the House." Hat grumbled. "Well… that's not true." He admitted. "The Slytherins have just had to listen to their parents go on and on about Pure Blood superiority."
"Maybe we should introduce a little muggle culture then." Harry grinned.
"Something for later." Filius said as he readjusted himself in his seat. "What I actually wanted to talk to you about was you being from the future."
"Oh… right, I kinda forgot I mentioned that." Harry laughed.
"How could you forget?"
"There was this giant snake and then a little snake and then you were blubbering-"
"Enough!" Filius said in exasperation. "Now… from what I understand, you have already begun changing the events. Just how much has changed?"
"Tons! I was a Gryffindor last time. I wasn't the Lord of Slytherin. I defeated the troll with Ron Weasley last time. I didn't face Quirrell till the end of term. Oh and I wasn't from the future last time." He finished with a grin.
Filius rubbed his temple. He could feel a headache coming on. "Are there any other major incidents coming up that we will need to deal with?"
"Well, we need to get Ron's rat, Scabbers, as he is actually Peter Pettigrew. Then we need to get Sirius out of Azkaban as he is innocent."
"Oh and I'd really like to get Gilderoy Lockhart to admit that he's a fraud. Smarmy bastard has been stealing people's accomplishments and memories for years."
"Let's see… after that the Tri-Wizard Tournament was in fourth year… I don't care about that one way or the other as long as I don't get entered again against my will. I do not want to have to deal with the ritual that gave Voldemort back his body again." Harry said adamantly. "And I definitely don't want Cedric to die as a result."
"Fifth year I was attacked by Dementors and the school was invaded by the Ministry. I can't see that happening again though. I think I've changed too much."
"One of the big things we have to do is find old No Name's horcruxes and destroy them so that the next time I see him I can kill him."
"Horcrux! As in a soul container?"
"That's the one! I know where most of them are. The hard part is going to be breaking into Gringotts and stealing the one in Bellatrix Lestrange's vault."
Harry grinned at Filius. "You seem to be taking this rather well Uncle Fil."
Filius was feeling fairly weak. He knew he looked it as well, even as he glared at Harry.
"You aren't screaming and throwing up after all." Harry shrugged.
Harry, Filius and the Hat relocated to Harry's chambers with the yet-to-be-named baby basilisk. Filius had objected to having the basilisk so near to other children but Harry and the Hat had argued that Harry needed it close by to teach it things… like not killing the children.
A comfortable nest was set up for the little guy on the opposite side of the bedroom to where Hedwig's perch was as the proud bird was eyeing the newcomer suspiciously and they didn't want any accidents to happen.
"Alright Harry, we need to decide what we are going to tackle first on your list." Filius sighed as he sank into the large armchair. Harry kept a footstool in front of it especially for his little uncle to use as a step.
"Sirius." Harry stated firmly. "We need to get him out of that awful place."
"Do you have a plan? As I am sure the Hat has pointed out already, you can't just tell people you have knowledge of the future."
"I do indeed!" Harry said as he produced his map with a flourish. He unrolled it on the coffee table and tapped it. "I solemnly swear I am up to no good!" He intoned.
"Good gracious! This is Hogwarts!" Filius was off the chair and leaning over the map. "Is this accurate?"
Harry pointed to his chambers on the map where he and Filius were labelled. "Watch."
Harry stood up and began running around the room randomly. He went to the bathroom, the bedroom, the library…
"That's enough Harry. I can see it works. I can also see Pettigrew." He frowned.
Filius conjured a small stool so he could sit at the table. "We will need to reveal this map to Minerva and Amelia." He warned Harry. "Where did you get it?"
Harry pointed to the four names at the top of the map. "Prongs is James Potter. Padfoot is Sirius Black. Moony is Remus Lupin and Wormtail is Pettigrew.
"I consider it a family heirloom but I want Sirius and Remus to duplicate the map for security. Also as I promised the people who had it last that I would get them a copy if I could."
"Who had it last?" Filius asked curiously.
"It would be safer for your sanity-"
"Haaaarryy…" Filius drawled warningly.
"The Weasley Twins."
Filius chuckled. "That explains their success in pranking. Not to mention your father's. Your mother would have loved this." He mused as he touched the map fondly. "It is a charms masterpiece."
Filius stood up and adjusted his tiny waistcoat. "Alright, I will go and find Minerva. You contact Amelia and ask her to come straight here to your quarters."
It was nearly an hour later and nearly time for dinner when Amelia and Minerva were both free to meet with Harry and Filius.
"Harry! Do you realise how dangerous something like this is?" Minerva scolded the seemingly eleven-year-old boy.
"Of course I do. Which is why I am glad it has a decent security system on it." Harry said with a small frown. He hated when people doubted him and questioned his judgement, especially after all he had done.
"Minerva, Harry has proven himself quite responsible over the past few months." Filius chided. "He successfully captured Lord No Name's minion and ran the bastard off, he ran the Minister and his Obliviators out of the castle and he has managed to not abuse his position over Snape."
"Yes, but he also nearly started a war with the goblins this week." Amelia glared at Harry.
Ok, so Harry had to admit that maybe they had sufficient reason to question him when it came to responsibility.
"How about we focus on the fact that my godfather is innocent and suffering in Azkaban whilst the real criminal is relaxing in luxury in the Gryffindor Tower?" Harry suggested as he poked a finger at the label of interest.
"Pettigrew?! But he's dead!" Amelia exclaimed.
"The map never lies." Harry said seriously.
"Where did you get the map?" Minerva asked. She was still having trouble believing what she was seeing.
"From the Weasley Twins." Filius smirked at her.
"Those little repr-"
"Minerva!" Amelia gasped as she glanced at Harry.
"I nearly killed a goblin king this week and started a war and you are worried about me hearing bad language?" Harry grinned at the ridiculousness of the idea.
"And I still haven't dealt with you for that!" Minerva glared at him.
"Actually, I believe you should know some secrets about Harry before we continue." Filius stated solemnly.
Harry was ignored except for the raised eyebrows by Minerva and Amelia at the very informal manner that Harry addressed his Professor.
"The three of us will need to take an Unbreakable Vow that we will not reveal the secrets of Harry James Potter." Filius continued.
"Unbreakable Vows?" Minerva gasped.
"Those are not something to bandied about lightly, Professor. I trust that Harry knows as well as you do the consequences of breaking an Unbreakable Vow?"
"In 1995 Severus Snape swore an Unbreakable Vow to Narcissa Malfoy that he would kill Dumbledore if Draco failed to." Harry said with a calmness that cooled the room.
After a few moments Amelia broke the silence. "1995?"
"If you want to know more you will have to take the Vow." The Hat spoke up. "If you refuse then I must highly recommend that you allow yourselves to be Obliviated of what Harry just told you."
"Minerva, Amelia, you should know me well enough that I would never even suggest something as barbaric as a vow with a mortal sentence if there was another way." Filius pleaded with them.
Amelia was not happy as she looked between Filius and Harry.
Minerva gave a resigned sigh. "You are quite correct, Filius. I will swear the Vow."
"Amelia, you were our student so you haven't had the same relationship as Filius and myself." She explained. "But I can swear that Filius is one of the most honest and trustworthy people I know. Forgive me for revealing this Filius," She looked apologetically to her friend, "but I believe this is in part due to his fervent desire to separate himself from the reputation and stigma his half goblin side brings him."
"It's quite alright Minerva." Filius said with a hint of shame.
"Why doesn't Madam Bones wait outside whilst Professor McGonagall takes the Vow." Harry suggested. "We can give her a brief overview of the secret and then she can confirm to Madam Bones if the information is worth the Vow."
Amelia looked each of them in the eyes carefully. She saw determination in Filius, resignation yet trust in Minerva and casual apathy in Harry behind which she could see a spark of fear.
"I'll take the Vow." She said finally.
Ten minutes later and they were seated there each bound to Harry by the Unbreakable Vow.
"My name is Harry James Potter. I was born July 31st 1980. I died May 2nd 1998. I was returned to life minutes later and defeated Tom Marvolo Riddle, also known as 'Lord Voldemort', in mortal combat minutes after that. That night I went to bed only to find myself sitting under the Sorting Hat and being sorted for my House in my first year… for the second time in a row." Harry said blandly.
Minerva and Amelia were looking at Harry suspiciously. Minerva turned to Filius.
"He has provided me with plenty of proof, Minerva." Filius assured her.
"I trust that you will share that proof considering the very dangerous Vow we just took?" She said archly, her Scottish brogue becoming slightly thicker.
"He showed me the Chamber of Secrets and defeated the Basilisk inside."
"Basilisk?" Amelia gulped.
"Sixty feet long, over 900 years old and now as dead as a door nail." Harry grinned. "It was much easier this time." He said with a bit of relief.
"This time?" Minerva nearly screeched.
"Last time I had to use the Sword of Gryffindor, the Sorting Hat and Fawkes. This time I had a rooster in my bag." Harry explained.
"Please… I've seen that beast Harry. Don't make me imagine you trying to kill it with a sword." Filius begged.
"I find it hard to believe that it didn't kill you!" Amelia argued.
"It nearly did!" Harry countered. "Fawkes took out the eyes but when I stabbed it through the mouth my arm was impaled on a fang. Fortunately Fawkes was able to heal me with his tears."
"I suppose you have more outlandish stories as well?" Amelia scoffed.
"Got any veritiserum?" Harry asked tiredly.
"Truth potion." Harry said with a cutting tone. "I could sit here all night and tell you the truth but you won't believe a lick of it unless you can prove it."
There was a bright flash of flame above Harry's head as Fawkes appeared in the room and slowly landed on his shoulder.
"Show off." Harry muttered to the fiery avian on his shoulder.
"I believe that will do to verify Harry's honesty." Filius laughed.
"I still have my doubts." Amelia sighed in resignation. "But even I won't argue with a Phoenix."
"If Fawkes is vouching for you, why haven't you told Professor Dumbledore?" Minerva asked.
"Because he is an idiot of the highest order." Harry grumbled.
"Minerva, do show some common sense." Filius rolled his eyes. "Albus may have been a great leader once but he has proven time and again that he has issues with allowing others control."
"The man keeps too many secrets." Harry nodded. "Like the fact that Voldemort is a half-blood or his real name or the fact that he was sitting in the back of a teacher's head inches away from the very children he would enjoy torturing and killing."
"It doesn't matter." Filius said as he sat forward. "The three of us can safely use Harry's knowledge to prevent Voldemort's return to power and other disasters. He has already dealt with Quirrell and the Chamber of Secrets, but now we need to deal with a great injustice. Namely Pettigrew and the wrongful incarceration of Sirius Black."
They all gazed at the map where Pettigrew was shown.
"How come we have never noticed him?" Minerva asked.
"Remus Lupin was a werewolf. His friends knew this and became illegal animagi to help him on the full moon. James was a stag, Sirius a huge black dog and Peter was a rat. Ron Weasley has a rat for a pet." Harry said with a calmness that was all he could manage to maintain at this point.
"But Black is in Azkaban." Amelia pointed out. "Why would Pettigrew need to hide?"
"Because the bastard was actually the Secret Keeper. He killed the muggles and cut off his finger to escape. Sirius is completely innocent and was never given a trial." Another memory hit Harry at that moment. "Actually, Crouch was the one who sentenced Sirius to Azkaban without trial. But at this very moment he is hiding his son in his house and controlling him with the Imperious Curse."
"How did you find all this out?" Filius asked curiously.
"The Weasleys were in the paper at the end of my second year. Sirius got a hold of a paper and saw Pettigrew and broke out to protect me. Last time round I was a Gryffindor and sleeping just feet away from the traitor.
"Crouch lost control of his son at the beginning of my fourth year and was instrumental in giving back Voldemort his body."
Harry rubbed his arm in memory of that horrible night.
Amelia sat back and put a hand to her temple in thought.
"Just how do you expect to solve all these problems without revealing you came from the future?" Minerva asked.
"I just need a few people who won't need to dig too deep in to their sources. Uncle Fil and I already know about the map. He can say that he was holding onto it for my Mum and that they were examining it as part of her Charms work. Then he can say he saw Pettigrew on the map when he shared it with me and called you and Madam Bones in. From there it is a hop, skip and a jump to getting Sirius out."
"It's the 'hop, skip and a jump' that has me worried." Amelia admitted.
"We haven't planned those yet as we needed your input." Filius explained.
"I suppose we could capture Pettigrew and interrogate him, but he was awarded an Order of Merlin! We can't just pour veritiserum down his throat." Amelia said in disgust.
"What rights do the dead truly have?" Filius said as he rubbed his chin thoughtfully.
"Pettigrew was awarded the Order of Merlin posthumously. He was declared dead nearly a decade ago. He has been hiding in a house where he would have heard all of this before. Can a dead man really object to what is done to him? Does he have any legal rights?" Filius continued his musings.
"The public will still see him as a hero." Amelia shook her head.
"Unless we accuse him of being a disgustingly morbid con-artist trying to make money off the name of a late hero. Then you could shove veritiserum down his throat and 'accidentally' expose the truth. The short hop, skip and a jump suddenly becomes merely a skip and a jump."
"Yeah!" Harry said excitedly. "If you make it a big public deal, go to Fudge and claim you found this imposter trying to get close to me, you could play his ego about protecting 'The Boy-Who-Lived'."
"Do you really think the Minister will be so easy to manipulate?" Minerva queried.
The response was a snort of derision from the others. "I could turn him into a paranoid little idiot who would refuse to come out from behind his desk with a few well timed comments." Harry sneered. "I wouldn't even have to lie. Insinuate? Maybe."
"Minerva, having informed you of the discovery regarding Peter Pettigrew made by Lord Slytherin and myself using his family heirloom, would you be so kind as to accompany me to the Gryffindor Dorms to apprehend this despicable individual?"
"NOW!? You want to do this now?" Amelia demanded.
"Every second we waste is another second an innocent man suffers in Azkaban." Filius glared at her.
"Madam Bones, whilst I am glad to see you here to continue our discussions of my family estate, a situation has arisen. A man has been discovered in the castle using the identity of one of the most beloved heroes of the war. I would ask you to accompany my professors in your capacity as the head of the DMLE as they apprehend this evil man."
Amelia glared at Harry.
"Innocent man in Azkaban, Amelia." Harry said with a hard look.
If there was one thing in his life that he hated, it was being forced to sit on the sidelines and not be able to do anything. It was what had happened during his fifth and sixth years. The fifth year had ended with Sirius' death and the sixth with Dumbledore's.
At least this time he could watch what was happening and he knew why things were happening. He sat in his quarters as he watched the Marauder's Map. The three sets of footprints moving through the Gryffindor Tower towards their target: Peter 'Wormtail' Pettigrew.
Judging by the lack of movement from the footprints, the little bastard was napping. The dorms were also empty due to dinner currently being served.
Harry suddenly realised there was a flaw to him having the map. He gathered it up and quickly ran through the castle, he reached the portrait of the fat lady and came to screeching halt.
"Language young man!" The portrait scolded. "That is not the behaviour one expects of a Lord."
"Sorry, look I really need to get into the Gryffindor tower. The professors are about to make a huge mistake! But I don't know the password."
"Well why didn't you say so." She said primly as she swung open.
Harry raised an eyebrow at being let in but chalked it up to him owning the castle. He stormed up the stairs to the boy's dorms just as they were about to burst in.
"Harry, you were supposed to wait in your rooms." Amelia scolded.
"Which would be fine except I had the map. You can't just go in there and stun the rat because you have no way of knowing Wormtail is the rat. You need the map to find him." Harry said pointedly. "If Pettigrew gets interrogated by Veritiserum and he says you knew he was a rat you will have to lie about how you knew. At least take the map."
"He is right. We nearly made a huge mistake." Filius nodded as he took the map. "Follow my lead. Harry stay by the door."
Minerva went in first with her wand out and ready to attack. Filius went in second with the map as Amelia brought up the rear.
Filius walked towards the bed, which the map said Pettigrew was on. "The map says he is here." He announced quietly.
"Homenum Revelio." He cast at the bed.
The rat in the cage began to glow.
"Animagus!" Amelia feigned shock.
Filius picked up the cage with the now agitated rat and walked around the room. "This is definitely him." He confirmed. "Madam Bones, this man is likely an unregistered animagus claiming to be Peter Pettigrew. I trust you will see it is investigated thoroughly."
"We should return to my quarters briefly." Harry spoke up. "Perhaps you should stun the intruder as well."
They were soon settled back in Harry's quarters.
"If you are going to take Pettigrew in you will need to do it through the front door of the Ministry in full view of the public. A leak to the Prophet wouldn't go amiss either." Harry explained.
"You fear assassinations and cover ups?" Filius asked.
"Better safe than sorry. That and Fudge did it last time and doomed the country." Harry shrugged.
"Then we will march him from your quarters to the gates before taking him to the Ministry steps." Amelia sighed. "I clearly have no choice but to accept that you know the truth."
"Dinner should be over by now. I'll have Severus accompany you as a guard." Harry nodded.
The group were causing quite a scene as they marched down the staircases and towards the entranceway. Portraits and paintings were running off to share the news that a strange man that resembled Pettigrew had been caught in the castle.
By the time they reached the entrance way Albus was standing there with the rest of the staff and their wands out. Hagrid had his crossbow in hand and Fang at his side.
"So it is true then." Albus said seriously. "Peter Pettigrew was alive and hiding in Salazar's quarters."
"Merlin bless the rumour mill." Filius snorted. "Once again you have proven why you are not a Ravenclaw, Albus."
Albus frowned. For some reason Filius had become slightly hostile towards him. Demeaning even.
"We discovered Pettigrew elsewhere Albus." Amelia interrupted quickly. "We can't say more without compromising our investigation."
"Did you know that Sirius Black didn't get a trial?" Harry asked curiously. "When I discovered the name Pettigrew I researched him. I discovered my connection to him and Sirius Black. Madam Bones did some digging and there are no records of his trial. Just his arrest and subsequent incarceration by Barty Crouch."
Albus' had a look of outrage and shock. He turned to Amelia. "In the interests of justice I would like to perform legilimancy on your prisoner to determine certain facts quickly, such as his identity and possible guilt. I am of course licensed and registered to use legilimancy in this manner."
"Of course Chief Warlock." Amelia said formerly.
Albus quickly got to work, drawing his old wand having lost the Elder Wand, he cast the spell verbally.
A few seconds later he withdrew from Pettigrew's mind.
He was not happy.
"Madam Bones I will need to accompany you. I have need of some of your Aurors to transfer Sirius Black to a holding cell in your department. His guilt is officially in question.
"Minerva, I will need you to see to the castle in my absence. You should consider me out of pocket for the next few days."
"Of course Albus."
Harry watched in surprise as Albus Dumbledore strode out of the castle with Amelia, Severus and Pettigrew in tow.
"Huh… I wasn't expecting that."
"Harry, I know you have issues with Albus, but at heart he is a good man." Filius said sternly.
"A good man who treated one boy with mistrust that helped push him further down the path to the dark side and another like an unwanted problem that left him severely malnourished, abused and so many other things." Harry scowled. "I won't deny that he has his good points but all things considered… I feel perfectly entitled to take this personally."
"Quite." Minerva agreed. "Especially as I personally warned him against leaving Harry with the Dursleys having watched them for a whole day."
"You did?" Harry asked.
"I did. There were plenty of other more suitable candidates for adopting you. I would happily have taken you. James himself placed you in my arms the day you were born. Lily was quite content to leave you in Filius' care if she had errands to run." She said hotly.
"Did you know that the first time Harry ever saw his parents was in my quarters a few weeks ago?" Filius said sadly.
"First time this time round." Harry corrected. "The first time round I didn't see them until the end of my first year, Hagrid gave me a photo album he made for me."
"Even worse!" Minerva hissed. "In some ways I wish we could tell Albus the truth about you just so he knows why I am hexing him! But your memories and our own experiences support your current course of keeping this from Albus."
"Still, this is pretty much what he did to me. Hid things from me."
"The difference Harry, is that you are not making the decisions by yourself. You have willingly confided in me and listened to my advice to confide in Minerva and Amelia. Albus has shown himself to be leaning towards a dictatorship more than a democracy." Filius assured him.
"So what do we do now?" Harry asked. He was a little lost as he had expected to have to wait for Pettigrew's trial before getting to Sirius and his innocence.
"Nothing. Aside from answering any calls from the DMLE as witnesses, we have done our part." Filius stated. "Sirius will be out of Azkaban within the hour and free within a month… if not sooner. This part of your mission is a success Harry. Take pride in your accomplishment and a well deserved break." He said with a proud smile.
"What about the other parts?"
"There is time. We should have a plan in place for just after Christmas for dealing with the marriage contracts and we can focus on the… Riddle side of things during the summer."
It was Christmas Eve.
Harry was seated at the end of a table in the Great Hall.
It was a small table placed slap bang in the middle of the spacious room. It was maybe two meters in length.
There were only two people in the expansive room. The doors were sealed shut and being guarded by suits of armour on the inside and out.
At one end sat Harry Potter in his eleven-year-old body wearing his school uniform and an unimpressed look.
At the other end was a very old and very decrepit looking man with a walking stick.
"So you're the famous Nicholas Flamel." Harry clearly didn't think much of the man.
"And you're the alleged Heir of Slytherin." The man said disdainfully
"Actually, I'm the boy who has your precious stone." Harry smirked.
Flamel's eyes narrowed. "What are you talking about boy?"
Harry dropped a red crystal on the table.
Flamel's hand snapped out and the crystal flew into it.
"You were saying?" The old man smirked triumphantly.
"Sad thing really. That little stone can extend your life but it doesn't seem to let you keep your youth or fix senility." Harry sighed.
Flamel kept his smirk as he waved a hand over his face and revealed a youthful young man with blue eyes and blonde hair who appeared to be in his late twenties. "After six hundred years I've learnt that people usually show you more respect if you look your age."
Harry stifled a snort of laughter at the irony of Nicholas Flamel saying that to him of all people.
Instead he smiled slightly. "And yet… you haven't noticed the obvious." He said as he placed an identical red crystal on the table.
Flamel scowled and quickly summoned the new rock. "And you don't seem to learn." Harry added.
He pulled out the first stone from his pocket and was about to vanish it when he realised something.
"These are both fakes!"
"About bloody time!" Harry said in exasperation. "Did you honestly think I would bring my Philosopher's Stone into a meeting with someone as corrupt as you?"
"It is my stone boy." Flamel growled. "And I am as light as they come."
"Says the man who allowed it to be used as bait to lure a mass murderer into a school of innoc- erm… school of children."
"I did no such thing. Just how did you get the stone?" Flamel asked curiously. "I heard word you entered into a contract with the goblins but there is no way they would cross me."
"Dumbledore had Hagrid retrieve it. You didn't know?" Harry queried.
Flamel was flabbergasted. "I need that stone to live! You need to take a dose of the elixir once a month and each batch only lasts around a year.
"Why would that foolish boy be so reckless with my life?" He said angrily.
"Well… in all fairness, there was a break in at the bank shortly after he had it removed." Harry allowed. "But then he put it in a room in the castle where any bunch of first years with a brain could reach it."
"There is no reason to believe the break in was to get my stone. Only Albus, and myself knew it was there. Even the goblins had no idea what I was keeping in there.
"Which, considering I rely on the stone for living, leaves only one place for a possible blabbermouth." He scowled.
"Hagrid seemed to know there was something important in the vault." Harry added. "And the only thing in the vault was the stone."
"I will be having some very serious words with that boy." Flamel snarled. "Playing with my life like that."
"Well, there was a good chance old Voldemort was getting pretty close to it here as well." Harry told him. "But don't worry, I stopped him and there is very little chance of him getting his mucky mitts on it." Harry assured him.
"You stopped him from trying to get it whilst in the act?" Flamel said slowly.
"Yeah. He had let a troll into the castle as a distraction, I knew what he was planning and who he was disguised as and I managed to get some friends at the Ministry to help me take him down." Harry grinned.
"So you didn't do it alone? You didn't plan it or cast the final blow?" He tried to keep the growing panic out of his voice.
"Well, I was the only one who knew. It was my idea to call in the Ministry, they let me run with my plan. Lord No Name took me as a hostage and was threatening to blow up the Hufflepuff table so I took him out."
"You killed him… again?"
"Well, he's not easy to kill as he put protections on himself. But I destroyed his current body and made him… impotent." Harry said the word with relish.
"Sweet Merlin boy. Do you know what you have done?"
"Saved your life and that of the school's there by invoking a life debt from all involved?" Harry asked innocently.
Flamel paled drastically.
"That was what you were referring too, right?" Harry maintained that eleven-year-old innocence.
Flamel sat up as he realised something. "If you keep my stone then you will effectively kill me. You won't be able to claim a life debt."
"Yes, but you are assuming I am that callous. Thanks." Harry said sarcastically.
"Then why haven't you returned my stone?!"
"Because it is dangerous and you owe me and everyone else for allowing it to be used to put our lives in danger!" Harry retorted. "You can still use it to make your elixir, I just want you to do it in secrecy where no one will know."
"I could do that at home. My house is under a very special ward." He insisted.
"Oh, you've heard of it." Filius asked, impressed.
"Yes, only as good as your secret keeper." Harry grumbled. "Who is yours?"
Flamel paled again.
"Really?" Harry asked in disdain at the guilty look on the older man's face. "Do you at least have a loyalty oath from him?"
The six-hundred-year old man turned pink with embarrassment.
"Like I said, the elixir can't cure senility!" Harry said in exasperation.
"I suppose you could do so much better?" Flamel snapped impatiently. "And why am I arguing with a child?" He asked himself.
"Because this child has out smarted you ever since he heard of you. This child not only holds your stone but also your life. This child… " Harry paused in his little rant before he sat back in his chair and just smirked at the older man. "This child holds all the cards. This child wants to see if you are worth giving it back to."
"Who are you really?" Nicholas Flamel asked carefully as he leaned forward. "You are far too savvy for just some snot nosed eleven-year-old firstie."
"I am Lord Harry Potter of Slytherin. You have endangered my home and those that reside there. Who I am is severely pissed off. The question you need to really ask is: Do you want to be the person who increases my anger?"
Nicholas sat back and scrutinised Harry calmly.
"'Lord Slytherin' eh? That's an… interesting name." He offered.
"If it was just a name then I would be just a boy." Harry countered. "We both know that is not the case."
"And what does the name mean to you?"
"Not half as much as it means to others." Harry snorted.
"So you intend to abuse your title?"
Harry took on a sage air. "One man's abuse is another man's… something an eleven-year-old should know nothing about." He finished quickly and uncomfortably.
Nicholas leaned for. "Are you really Harry Potter?"
Harry matched his movement. "Are you really that stupid?"
Nicholas huffed as he sat back. "So what is it you intend to extort out of me so I can get my stone back?"
"The basics. Gold and possibly the elixir." Harry said as he sat back himself calmly.
"You really are just eleven. And greedy."
"Well… I will settle for a stupid amount of gold, but I would prefer you join my group. Or at least become my partner in starting up a wizarding bank."
"Oh? Is that all?" Nicholas was laying the sarcasm on thick.
"Or we could wait for the goblins to cheat us again." Harry shrugged. "I keep all my money and stuff out of Gringotts."
"Where would that be?"
"What would be the point of telling you? I'm keeping it safe remember?
"Look, if you aren't interested in preventing a goblin war and making sure that people aren't charged half their wages each year just to have a vault, then fine. I'll do it all myself. But I'll still want a lot of gold and the elixir."
"Why do you need the gold to start a bank? Wizards aren't like the muggles. They expect to pay interest, not be paid it." Nicholas pointed out.
"Oh I don't want the money to start the bank." He said dismissively. "I want the money so I can buy wizarding Britain and rule it properly."
Nicholas stared at Harry for a full ten seconds before he broke down and practically sobbed. "Can't I please just have my stone back?"
Harry looked at him with disgust. "What a baby."