I don't own anything with regard to Harry Potter. It's the property of JK Rowling and WarnerMedia.

This story, to which I extend my intellectual property rights, starts from the premise that Harry says something before Vernon rips up the first letter that was delivered 24th July 1991.

Harry James Potter couldn't believe it. In amongst the letters to the Dursleys with whom he lived was a letter addressed to him in the Cupboard under the Stairs. He was staring at it so long that he didn't notice his fat cousin Dudley sneak up on him and grab the letter.

"The Freak's got a letter." Cousin Dudley waved it around, keeping it out of Harry's reach. Aunt Petunia Dursley paled when she saw the letter. Harry noticed and stopped trying to grab it. Dudley handed it to Uncle Vernon Dursley. He opened it and pulled it out. He was about to rip it up. Harry had a brainwave.

"They'll only send more until I receive the letter."

Vernon looked across to Petunia, who nodded. Vernon handed the letter to Harry. Harry read it. It was an invitation to a wizard school called Hogwarts. Harry had to reply by owl.

"We're not letting you attend," Vernon said. Harry only half heard him.

"Is there an owl waiting outside, Aunt Petunia?" She looked out of the kitchen window and there on the clothes line was an owl. She turned to Harry and said, "Yes, there is."

"I'd better reply before number 6 decides we're not normal. A pen and paper, so I can say 'Thanks, but no thanks."

Vernon, who had been turning a shade of purple looked at Harry. He did a double take. Harry didn't want to go to that school. He gave Harry a pen and sheet of paper. In before the freak changed his mind.

Harry wrote:

Dear Hogwarts,

Thanks for your invitation to attend your school, but no thanks. I shall not be attending. Kindly refund any funds paid in advance to my account and return any of my property you may be holding.

Harry James Potter

Harry folded up the letter and opened the back door. The owl came to him and presented its leg. Harry attached the letter. The owl flew off. Harry went back into the lounge and sat down. Normally, that would result in a beating.

"You recognized the envelope, Aunt Petunia?"

"Yes, Harry, I did. My sister, your mother received one just before her 11th birthday. She also received some documents you haven't, including school rules. I wrote asking to attend the school, only to be turned down."

Dudley couldn't work out what was going on. They were being nice to the freak.

"My mother was a witch?"

"Yes, her name was Lily." He realized his parents hadn't died in a car accident.

"My parents didn't die in a car accident, did they?"

"No, they were both freaks like you. We tried to beat it out of you?"

"That seemed to be a dangerous thing for you to do," Harry said.

"Yes, that's what the dreadful boy said to me, when I tried to beat the magic out of Lily."

"Was the dreadful boy my father?"

"No, his name was Severus Snape. He rented my parents house after they died. Lily didn't come to their funeral and didn't even refer to it, in a letter she wrote saying they had gone into hiding at the urging of Albus Dumbledore."

"Perhaps this Dumbledore didn't let them know about it."

"He was the one who left you and a letter on our doorstep. We found both the morning of 2nd November 1981. A dark wizard murdered them on Halloween. What was strange was that Lily had said alternative provision had been made for you in the event of their deaths. Your father's name was James."

"We tried to get money for you from the county on several occasions," Vernon said.

"And the next time you went to check up, they looked at you like they didn't know you."

"Yes. How did you know?"

"I've encountered the same effect. It explains why you've never spent any money on me. None of the provision my parents made found it your way, either. Anyone who comes here looking for me, would see no clue that I was around."

"We were told having you here would protect us."

"You didn't trust the source of that information, did you?"

"No," Petunia said, bitterly.

"Do you trust this dreadful boy, adult now, to give you the truth about what is really going on?


"Did you ever go to get school supplies with my mother?"

"Yes, the whole family did. Our parents couldn't see this Diagon Alley, but I could and went with Lily to do her shopping. We went to the goblin bank Gringotts to change our money into wizarding coinage."

"What do you think, Uncle Vernon? Do we go into Crawley tomorrow and get all that money you're owed for me?"

"We're on," Vernon said, surprising himself. "You'll need a disguise."

"I think Dudley has a cap that would fit me, if he'll loan it."

"Dudley," Vernon said.

"Sure, the freak can borrow it."

"Why don't we go today," Vernon said. "I'll phone work and let them know not to expect me in today. I haven't got any important meetings today." Vernon did that and shortly he and Harry, wearing Dudley's cap, left for the county officers in Crawley.

They only had to wait an hour before a Child Services officer escorted them into an interview room. Vernon placed the letter Dumbledore had written. The officer looked confused. Harry suspected Vernon had done this many times. Harry decided to speak up.

"My name is Harry James Potter. I was born 31st July 1980. I was left on my Aunt and Uncle Dursleys doorstep overnight 1st November 1981. I am still with them. They're owed a lot of money for me and, as you can see, I could do with some new clothes. I attend Little Whinging primary school from the age of 5 and have just left it. I'll be attending the local comprehensive in September."

The officer phoned his colleagues in Education and soon had Harry's file.

"I see young Harry is a troublemaker."

"Misdirection," Harry said. "A nutter killed my parents and had equally nutcase followers. The neighbours don't talk about me. If there is anyone looking for me, they aren't going to find out anything about me."

"Yes, the letter does mention their murder. Not having people talk about you is a good defense against someone finding you. I don't know how your claim for your nephew has fallen through the cracks Mr Dursley, but I can approve it today. You may have had to fill out the claim form already, but it is necessary. I can help you get it done."

The officer did just that. A couple of hours later and Mr Dursley left with a cheque for £23,400, with a monthly sum of £200 to be paid at the end of each month. He was delighted. He was pleased that Harry had kept his wits about him. Harry and his Uncle went into Barclays Bank to deposit the cheque


"Which of your accounts would you like to put your money in Mr Potter?"

"My clothing account, please and could I have statements for each of my accounts."

"Certainly, Mr Potter. I'll just print them out."

"What is the limit for withdrawals? As you can see, I am in urgent need of new clothes. I have a cousin who is about the same age and he's going through a growth spurt at the moment."

"I think I can allow a £500 withdrawal. As you'll know, only you, Mr Potter, can withdraw money. Normally, the most you can withdraw is £50 a month."

Vernon Dursley had no idea Harry had access to this kind of money. He eagerly helped Harry check his accounts. He had a £30000 educational trust fund that Petunia's parents had set up. That was just like Dudley. Lily had a stock portfolio worth £750000. It was managed by a solicitor in Godric's Hollow. Harry had a clothing account that now had £52,900 in it. He had a housing account that had £50000 in it. Harry's clothing account had £250 coming in from Gringotts.

Harry had never had £500 before. Uncle Vernon was eager to get his hands on it.

"I think I'd like to help with Dudley's new outfit. He's been clear what he wants and it's £100. I think I can pay that."

Vernon Dursley wasn't stupid. He wanted to go talk to the solicitor in Godric's Hollow. Harry was very quick shopping. He spent £300 on clothes. Vernon couldn't quite understand Harry's pride in spending money on Dudley. He was pleased to see how Harry went for long lasting clothes and got value for money. Ever since Harry had decided against going to Hogwarts, Vernon had been warming to him. Harry was wearing some of his new clothes. Entry back into 4 Privet Drive proved difficult for Harry. Dudley didn't stop complaining until he saw what he'd got. Petunia gasped at the name Gringotts.

"Is Godric's Hollow close enough for us all to go there this afternoon?" Harry asked.

After consulting some maps, Vernon announced a family outing. Harry had a thought.

"On other trips you've taken me on, I've met strangely dressed people. They have to be wizards and witches. If we see any, see if you can find out what they think about me. Hopefully, your cap will be sufficient disguise for me, Dudley."

"I want £50 for ice cream," Dudley exclaimed.

"You eat £50 worth of ice cream, Dudley, you'll be sick. It's a fair amount and I'll expect your best performance."

Dudley got to earn his money. Harry was the Boy-Who-Lived, the only person ever to survive the killing curse and he'd killed the Dark Wizard, You-Know-Who. Somehow, Dudley doubted that was the wizard's real name and why, if Harry had killed him, was he being raised in secret? How, if nobody had ever seen him, did they know he had a lightning bolt scar? Dudley was rather pleased with his detective efforts. He was a regular Sherlock Holmes. He had information to give his parents. He found his father talking with the solicitor. Harry had taken the key and Aunt Petunia up to see his property.

Petunia could see the plinth celebrating her sister's death. She asked where the house was. A magical nearby said it was still under the Fidelius charm that Sirius Black had been Secret Keeper for and betrayed his friend James Potter and his wife Lily and had then gone on to kill a dozen muggles and another former friend Peter Pettigrew. Harry slipped into the house, unseen. He looked for some loose floorboards. He'd done the same at Privet Drive.

Harry found a loose floorboard and soon extracted the loot hidden there. A letter told him the spell to say to end the Fidelius Charm and two more to make the house unplottable and untrackable. Harry cast the spells. He felt so tired after doing that. Harry picked up a sheet of a letter and added that to a bag he'd found. He noticed, since it was rather difficult not to that the stairs and a third of the house were missing.

Harry made his way out of the house, locking up as he left. He saw the plinth and directed some accidental magic at it. That proved draining, too. He picked up Aunt Petunia and they went back to the solicitors. Harry said that a third of the house was missing. The solicitor promised to get people working on it right away. Harry handed the keys over.

Harry explained that he'd had to do magic to reclaim his house and was now very tired. He apologized that he was going to sleep. Before he fell asleep, Aunt Petunia asked him if he'd destroyed the plinth and if he'd authorized magical Britain to become its owners. He said he hadn't and that he'd destroyed the plinth with some freaky stuff. Vernon and Dudley had both laughed. Whilst Harry slept, Petunia told Vernon and Dudley what she'd seen and heard. Dudley explained his deductions. Vernon related what he'd learnt about the shares in the portfolio. They had been well-chosen.

Harry had woken up in time to cook the evening meal. He was allowed to eat it with the family, for a change. They all helped clear the stuff away. Harry again apologized for being so tired. Petunia told him that they'd go to Gringotts tomorrow. Harry had nodded. He changed into his pjs and fell asleep. He remembered cavorting around his room on the back of a big black dog, Padfoot.

His magic began to heal and burst through bindings that had been placed on him long ago. Now, Albus Dumbledore whose instruments monitored various things about Harry Potter had normally departed on his summer hols, which he spent with Gellert Grindelwald. Gellert was Albus'[ living proof of his success with his policy of second chances. Albus was wishing he had already left. He'd spent an hour listening to the Minister for Magic demanding to know where the Potter House in Godric Hollow had gone. It no longer appeared in the ledger of houses owned by the State. Albus found he could no longer remember anything about it. He couldn't do anything about it.

Albus had settled down with a nice glass of port, when in burst Minerva McGonagall. She'd had a reply from Harry Potter. She had known it. Those worst kind of muggles had done it.

"Done what, Minerva?" Albus enquired.

"Harry Potter has declared he is not attending and that we repay any monies already paid and return to him any Potter items we have."

"Harry Potter must attend. I shall go there, tomorrow and change his mind." Dumbledore had mollified Minerva. He floo called the old guard of the Order of Phoenix to watch 4 Privet Drive. By the time they had arrived, the Dursleys had gone their separate ways. Harry had taken the train with Aunt Petunia. Dudley and his gang watched as 5 men and women, oddly addressed gathered around a man with a long white beard wearing a purple robe. Dudley was incensed when he saw the man in the purple enter his house. Dumbledore found nothing to indicate that Harry Potter even lived there. If he or the school hadn't sent out the invitation letter, they wouldn't know where Harry Potter was.

Dudley had his four gang members ask the 5 strange people who they were. Amazingly, they told them their names. He'd have more information to tell his parents that evening. Harry went to Gringotts. Gringotts told him that without his key, he could not enter his vault. A teller named Griphook told him that. Petunia was a little bit scared of the goblin.

"Who ever has my vault key has no authorization to hold it. Recover it for me."

"There will be a small fee."

"The hell there will be. You're supposed to hold my key for me until I come to claim it." Harry knew this from the information he'd read that he'd found at Godric's Hollow. "I want to see my account holder for an answer." Harry's soprano voice had now shifted into anger.

"Who are you?" Griphook demanded.

"You don't recognize me? I want to see Sawaxe. Immediately or I'll have your head." Griphook paled. He knew who Sawaxe was. He was the Potter account manager. He had been for nearly 50 years. That meant the young wizard under the cap was none other than Harry James Potter and he was now very, very angry.

A couple of minutes later Harry and Petunia were shown into Sawaxe's office. Sawaxe was not willing to deal with them. He told Harry that he could not withdraw money without his Vault Key.

"You are failing to honour the contract my parents signed with you and Gringotts to hold my Vault Key for me until I came to collect it. I have come to collect my Vault Key today. You do not have it. I claim the full refund of the money paid under the contract, demand a new key at no cost and the cancellation of the old key without incurring any charges." The instructions from his parents had been very clear about what he was to say. Harry had failed to state the replacement had to be provided that day and Sawaxe exploited that omission.

"It shall be as you say Lord Potter. Your new key will be available to you tomorrow at no charge to yourself or your account. The old key will be cancelled without you incurring any charges. You cannot withdraw any money without your key. Good day."

Outside, Harry fumed. "I'm sorry Aunt Petunia, I failed to specify that my key had to be replaced today."

"That's alright, Harry. I know Lily did not enjoy dealing with Goblins. Where now?"

"Do they have a police department?"

"Yes, at their Ministry, from what Lily told me."

They made their way to the Ministry and entered the main entrance. Harry made sure his cap was pulled down over his scar. He didn't want to be recognized, yet. They made their way to the DMLE and the Head of the Department. They entered the secretary's area. Those who passed by referred to them, contemptuously, as muggles. They waited for half-an-hour, before Harry dragged a chair barring entry to the office. The secretary continued to ignore them. Harry ignored her. He and Petunia entered the office of Amelia Bones, head of the DMLE.

"I don't deal with muggles, I am very sorry."

Harry took off his cap and showed his lightning bolt scar. "Not as sorry as you're going to be. This is my Aunt Petunia, my mother's sister. She'd be categorized as a Squib, I suppose, by your racially bigoted society. I am Lord Harry James Potter. My parents arranged for my Vault Key to be held by Gringotts until I went to collect it. This I did today, only to find the key not present. I suspect a certain Albus Dumbledore holds it. He is not authorized. Arrest him for…"

"Line theft," Petunia supplied helpfully.

"Yes, line theft," Harry said.

"Would you know where I might find Albus Dumbledore?" Amelia asked.

"Since I told him I wasn't attending Hogwarts, I imagine he's currently committing trespass."

"Wait here."

"The address is 4 Privet Drive, Little Whinging, Surrey. You might need that information, Madam Bones."

Amelia allowed her monocle to fall out and smirked. She collected her senior staff and they apparated to the address. Sure enough they found Dumbledore inside the property and 5 outside. They arrested everyone. Dumbledore told Bones that it was all a misunderstanding. Dumbledore and his 5 followers were soon ensconced in the DMLE holding cells. One of the Aurors overheard one of Dudley's gang members describing how the six were wierdos in strange clothes. It was like Halloween. That auror had heard enough: This was a Breach of the Statute. He wrote the incident up as such.

Ameila returned to her office to find a notification from Gringotts that Albus Dumbledore was in possession of Harry Potter's Vault Key, without authorization. The key had been cancelled in accordance with Lord Potter's instruction. Harry hadn't been charged for that action either. Gringotts was trying to earn his favour. Amelia was able to send Gringotts the Vault Key found in Albus Dumbledore's possession. She was sure it was Harry Potter's. Gringotts confirmed that it was. Gringotts confirmed that Lord Potter had been supplied with a new Key. Harry had picked it up that morning. Amelia chuckled. She'd told him to stay put. He had gone and got his new Key and claimed his Head of House Ring. Magic didn't care how old Harry was. That was the last smile she'd have with this case. Interviewing Dumbledore was always a major pain in the ass. He never addressed you by your correct title. He always tried to make it sound like he was interviewing you and he never accepted responsibility for anything. Amelia began the interview, with a sinking feeling in her stomach.

"Chief Warlock what were you doing inside a muggle property?"

"Looking for someone, Amelia?"

"You were looking for me?"

"I was looking for Harry."

"Why were you looking for Harry?"

"Harry turned down a place at Hogwarts. He has to attend."

"Did you have permission to enter the house?"

"Not directly, but I am sure his guardians would have given me permission had they been around for me to give the reasons Harry must attend."

"Why would they do that?"

"I left Harry on their doorstep with a letter aged 15 months." (Amelia forbear asking why a letter had been kept for 15 months.)

"Is one of your roles wizarding child services?"

"No, but defending Magical Britain is."

"How is removing a witness to a murder defending Magical Britain?"

"Harry wouldn't have remembered anything relevant."

"You made sure of that, did you, Dumbledore?"

"That's Chief Warlock, Amelia."

"That's a very tempting offer, Dumbledore. First you claim you're in the House as Headmaster of Hogwarts. Now, you're claiming that you're the Chief Warlock defending Magical Britain. Isn't Sirius Black still Guardian of Harry Potter?" Amelia knew the Goblins had refused to allow Lucius Malfoy access to the Black account. The Minister for Magic, Cornelius Fudge, kept demanding she do something about it – usually just after a visit from said Lucius Malfoy.

"I believed Sirius Black was the Potter's secret keeper." Was Dumbledore an idiot? The whole point about the Fidelius Charm was that you couldn't say anything about the Secret Keeper. That Dumbledore could talk about Sirius Black was because he wasn't the Secret Keeper.

"You said this at Sirius Black's full trial before the Wizengamot?"

"There was no trial, his guilt was obvious."

"Was Sirius Black present when you cast the Fidelius Charm?"


"Therefore, you knew he wasn't the Secret Keeper and you sent an innocent heir to a Noble and Most Ancient House to Azkaban and left him to rot."

"The Greater Good requires sacrifice."

"My job requires an absolute commitment to the truth. That was something Barty Crouch forgot. You and your sycophants were parading around a muggle area in broad daylight and didn't keep discussing magic out of your conversations. You and your 5 followers broke the Statute of Secrecy."

"That was just a misunderstanding, Amelia. No harm done."

"No harm done? The local paper had a headline – 'Halloween Comes Early. Wizards commit trespass'. You and your followers will be held in custody until formal proceedings at the Wizengamot. We could just send you to Azkaban in the belief you're obviously guilty."

Aurors came and escorted Dumbledore to the holding cells. Amelia went looking for Harry Potter. She found him watching Arthur Weasley playing with a rubber duck. Amelia noticed both of Harry's eyebrows were raised in horror.

"Are they that dangerous?" Amelia asked.

"No. They are children's toys used in the bath." Harry's answer was loaded with contempt. "Adults don't play with them."

"Arthur is our muggle expert."

"You're in serious trouble. You wizards can't dress to blend in and you've an incompetent as your muggle expert." Harry was not mincing words.

"It's part of auror training to blend in. I did my training a decade ago."

"The clothes you wore would have blended in a decade ago. They do not now. I'm interested in friends of my parents, namely Remus Lupin and Peter Pettigrew. I understand Sirius Black is in prison."

"We don't know where Remus Lupin is. Sirius Black is in prison. I'm looking into re-opening the case. Peter Pettigrew is dead."

"You're sure Pettigrew is dead? Can you check?" Harry asked this because he had some doubts. He found he was remembering snatches of things from before his parents' deaths. He'd wondered, if his Head of House ring was doing this. He couldn't exactly ask.

"There's a Wall of Life down in the Department of Mysteries. We call them the Unspeakables, because they never speak."

"Let's go check. Do they do prophecies? I'm kind of famous, so maybe there's one about me."

Amelia took Harry down to check the Wall of Life. She looked for Peter Pettigrew. She found him. She was absolutely shocked. What had Barty Crouch done? Certainly not his job. Was there a prophecy about Harry? There was. He listened to it. He seemed to be in a state of shock. Amelia wasn't much better. Telling a ten-year-old that he or the monster You-Know-Who was would die at the hand of the other was intrinsically shocking. Learning that You-Know-Who was somehow alive could be devastating information in certain hands.

"Perhaps it would be better if those Unspeakables of yours removed this prophecy and destroyed it and it not be spoken of again," Harry said, with conviction.

As if by magic, an Unspeakable appeared and removed the prophecy. Harry hoped they'd destroy it. Croaker, the Department Head did just that. He'd always been very suspicious that it had been brought in by Albus Dumbledore and had not been verified as a true prophecy. It was one of those 'trust me, I'm Albus Dumbledore' things and Croaker didn't trust Dumbledore. There were two other things that Croaker didn't believe. Dick Cresswell claimed to be pureblood. He was Head of the Goblin Liaison Office and had been for a decade. It was thanks to him that wizards and goblins were on speaking terms. There was no way he was pureblood. The Minister's Senior Undersecretary claimed to be a pureblood. To hold the post she had to be, only Croaker knew her father was a janitor at the Ministry and her mother had been a muggleborn. Dolores Jane Umbridge had ambition written all over face. She had committed two murders, Croaker was sure about and he could almost prove a third. Fudge, the Minister, only listened to three people: Albus Dumbledore, Lucius Malfoy and Umbitch, as she was called by almost everyone behind her back. Croaker believed him to be very badly advised. Lucius Malfoy paid the Ministry 500000 galleons a year and Fudge's annual salary of 100000 galleons. Croaker was sure he had been and still was a Death Eater. He didn't buy the Imperius defence, especially from those who had refused veritaserum. Veritaserum was not infallible; that much was true. Of course, the Unspeakables could brew a special kind. It was also true that Lords of the Wizengamot could not be tried, except by the Wizengamot; Malfoy was not a Lord of the Wizengamot. He used his family money or rather his father Abraxas had.

Croaker believed many things about the uses to which Albus Dumbledore put Potions Master Professor Snape, none of which he could prove, absolutely. Croaker needed to talk with Harry Potter. He most certainly did. The boy had taken the prophecy, if such it truly was, as well as anyone could have, regardless of age. He wanted access to that scar. He knew who Lord Voldemort really was. He knew he was still alive, as did Dumbledore. He knew that the man had made horcrux. He believed that Nagini was one. He believed she'd been the prototype, the test run for one Voldemort intended to possess himself, namely Harry Potter, once he turned 11. Voldemort would extend his life with a Potter. As a Potter, he would possess the wealth of the family and its secrets. Secrets of Potions and Time. Dumbledore could not allow Harry's innate Potter Potions genius to surface. Harry could brew potions that would free him from Dumbledore's grasp. That was as long as he wasn't gaslighted at Hogwarts.

Harry Potter was back in Amelia Bones' office. He was wearing his cap.

"Did my parents have friends?"

"Yes, lots of them."

"Why did they never visit or write?"

"They did write. They never received an answer."

"I never received any mail." Harry shook his head. If he had, he'd have been thrown into his cupboard or worse. Harry had endured worse on many occasions. Owls delivering letters was not in any definition of normal.

"Were they close with anyone?"

"Yes. They were close with the Longbottoms. They were trainee aurors with them. They'd both completed their second year of training, successfully, I might add, before they went into hiding."

"How did the person who held your job at the time – you look far too young to be in charge a decade ago - feel about losing 4 trainees?" Amelia smiled at Harry's compliment.

"They'd both faced You-Know-Who a number of times. Crouch needed Dumbledore's support to allow aurors to use the Unforgiveables."

"How was the war going, before and after? How many times?"

"We were losing before the aurors could use more than stunning spells. Winning thereafter. Three. Each." Amelia realized Neville Longbottom could also be the One identified by the prophecy. "Bagnold vanished soon after your victory and Barty who had been favourite to become Minister had to send his son to Azkaban for an attack on the Longbottoms and lost out to Cornelius Fudge who had arrested Sirius Black."

"Who were they close to at school?"

"Peter Pettigrew, Sirius Black and Remus Lupin."

What do you know about Remus Lupin?" Something tugged at Harry's memory. Remus was the one he'd called Uncle Moony and he had heard the phrase 'little furry problem' more than once.

"Peter was supposed dead, but we know he's alive. Sirius is in Azkaban. Remus Lupin is a tutor, though his jobs don't last very long."

"Do werewolves exist?"

"Yes, they do. It's controllable with a potion called wolfsbane. Vampire, giants and dragons exist, too. It's best to avoid them."

"When's the next full moon?"

"Tomorrow," Amelia said, thoroughly confused.

"I want to hire Remus Lupin as my tutor, as I'm not going to Hogwarts. I don't have an owl."

"I can show you where you can buy one this afternoon, if you come with me and my niece, Susan, shopping for Hogwarts supplies. I can use my Bones post owl to send your job offer. You'd have to stay over for the reply. Would that be a problem?"

"That would be brilliant. No, it would not be a problem. This is the time of year my relatives always go on holiday, without me. I think I am paying though. They receive £3000 a year from my school account. They've never spent a penny on me."

Amelia was thinking dark thoughts about what she'd like to do to Harry's muggle relatives. It was time she was leaving. She had Susan and their owl to meet at Fortesque's Ice cream parlour. After they'd left the building, Harry talked to her.

"If I buy the books, which I'll need anyway, somebody will get the idea that I am going to Hogwarts, whatever I said. I do need to know who my parents' friends were. Does the Wizarding world do baptisms and christenings?"

"Yes, we do. I can ask for the Daily Prophet editions from that time, also the editions from Halloween 1981 to the end of the first week of November 1981."

"I'll do an interview, if you think that will help, after the next Wizengamot meeting."

"Yes, I think that will help."

"Do I have seats in the Wizengamot?" Amelia explained what Harry needed to do to claim any seats by inheritance and by conquest. Harry did that. Harry was secretly relieved no seats actually rained down on him.

"What was Sirius accused of?"

"Murder of Peter, 12 muggles and your parents."

"There's someone missing from that list."


"Me. If you can hold him in the holding cells until the next Wizengamot meeting, you can charge him with that crime. If anyone asks, you're trying to pin more crimes on Sirius Black and are seeing what you can get him with, Azkaban being too good for him."

"If I didn't know you were convinced he's innocent, I'd swear you were out for his blood, literally. There's Susan. She is like you. She lost both her parents in the war, too."

"She ended up with a much better relative." Amelia blushed. She and Harry reached Susan, who was eating an ice cream and chatting to an owl.

"The famous Bones post owl," Harry said. The owl preened herself. "Hello Susan. I'd take my cap off, but you'd recognize me instantly and alert everyone to my presence. That's something I don't want."

Susan Bones put two and two together. Harry Potter. It was all she could do not to scream. Amelia said, "Harry's going to be staying with us, overnight." Susan hoped it would be for longer. Everyone would be so jealous.

Harry went to Gringotts and drew out 600 galleons. He also cancelled the money each month going to his muggles relatives. Amelia had written out a job offer. 100 galleons a month plus wolfsbane seemed fair to Harry. Harry insisted Amelia added a postscript 'for your little furry problem'. The wolfsbane set him back 300 galleons of the three bottles of one-use potion each.

Harry decided against buying a wizard telescope. He knew that he could order a far better model from Dudley's magazine than he could get in Diagon Alley. He bought a snowy white post owl. He enjoyed shopping with Susan. She was full of tips to getting better value for money. Harry followed her advice. Amelia was really pleased that Harry didn't just splash the cash. When it came time to buy a trunk, Susan got a used one costing 25 galleons. Harry explained why he had to spend more. Everyone and their dog would want to get into his trunk, because of who he was. He got a really good trunk for 96 galleons. Susan had helped get him a good discount, too.

Harry bought some extra books. He found three books that explained what had happened that night. Harry had his doubts. He bought a cauldron cleaning kit and a book that explained the use and preparation of 1001 potions ingredients. He got a decent cauldron. Susan explained that copper was better than pewter because pewter reacted with a lot more of the common ingredients than copper. Harry picked up a book on Wizarding etiquette, a Wizengamot primer and a history of government of Magical Britain from the first wizards' council to the modern day. Harry had 24 galleons and some change left out of 600 galleons.

The wand buying proved the most entertaining. Amelia Bones was with him, when Ollivander said he had sold the brother of Harry's wand, the one which had given him the star. They both had a shock, when the name Tom Marvolo Riddle was given. Harry had already leafed through Hogwarts:A History and stopped at the photo of young Riddle. The equal of Albus Dumbledore. That's what the caption had read. Neither spoke about it. They drag an irritated Susan Bones to the Wall of Life. There listed among the living was Tom Marvolo Riddle.

They arrived back at Bones Manor. Remus had replied. He thanked the Bones for the Wolfsbane and accepted the job as tutor. He explained in his note that he'd be able to visit on Sunday.

Amelia used Friday to gather information. The Daily Prophet gave her everything she asked for. The offer of an interview by the Boy-Who-Lived was golden. Amelia gathered that Sirius Black was Harry Potter's godfather. She conducted interviews with the friends of the Potters. She made a list that she would give to Harry. Minerva and Hagrid were unavailable. They wouldn't talk to her whilst Dumbledore was held under arrest. The Minister demanded to know what she was doing. Amelia told her that she was looking at other unsolved murders and seeking to put Sirius Black at the locations. Fudge caught the inference that Amelia was looking to kill Sirius Black. That would please Lucius Malfoy no-end. Fudge saw a donation coming his way. Fudge was ecstatic that Dumbledore was about to be charged with a breach of the Statute. Amelia couldn't make it stick. She couldn't even get him for breaking and entering a muggle property. The Wizengamot would not care, for a start. Secondly, he did have a responsibility to Harry Potter. As far as the Statute was concerned, nobody, child muggles didn't count, saw Dumbledore. His 5 sycophants could be charged, but would spend a month in Azkaban, at most. The only witness who would place them as being real wizards and witches was Harry's cousin, Dudley, and he already knew about the Wizarding World and hadn't said anything that would reveal its existence to other muggles. Amelia Bones had to bring charges against the 6, including Dumbledore.

Amelia Bones did some more digging for information and discovered the Harry Potter was right about the Dursleys treating themselves to a holiday he was paying for. They'd paid £3000 for a month at a good hotel on Trinidad. She was surprised the boy wasn't angry. If he were acting, he was a shoe-in for Slytherin.

Amelia arranged for Neville Longbottom to come over on Saturday. Augusta Longbottom was pleased Neville was meeting a girl. The chubby boy had few friends and lacked the social graces. Augusta thought this. Considering she thought wearing a vulture hat was acceptable in social circles that was saying something and not in a good way.

Susan had Harry all to herself for Friday. She talked. Harry talked. Susan could not believe how bad Harry's life had been. They talked about what it was like to have to deal with the loss of their parents. Susan was shocked to hear that Harry had been told that his parents were unemployed drunks who died in a car crash. Susan invited Hannah over for the morrow. She could not wait to introduce her to Harry.

Hannah was Hannah Abbott, the heiress to the Noble and Most Ancient House of Abbott. Her father was not a fan of Dumbledore, loathed him in fact, but got nowhere trying to challenge him. Alan Abbott wanted a name he could attach himself to that could challenge Dumbledore. The only name was Harry Potter and Dumbledore had him secreted away somewhere. Hannah knew Susan from various functions. Her father had told her the Bones name was rising and it would help the family, if Hannah became friends with Susan. Hannah, if truth were told, was pleased to get out of the manor and away from her father's endless political strategizing. Hannah was told she had to be a dutiful daughter. That meant she would do whatever her father told her to, marry whom she was told to marry and have children. She was to stay out of the man's world of politics. Hannah's mother was more intelligent than her husband. She had tried to advise him. He wouldn't listen to her. From listening to his rants and plans, she worked out very quickly that he wasn't a leader or much of a planner. Oh, she helped him. She put in a good word for him, when she got together with wives of other Wizengamot members and pushed his agenda; the parts with which she agreed, at any rate.

Late Friday evening, Amelia returned home. She found a meal waiting that Harry had cooked. She was tired and not exactly happy. She ate. The meal was very good. She was relaxed as she drank her muggle coffee. Harry had made himself some hot chocolate. He joined Amelia on the couch.

"You're looking drawn. How did today go?"

"I've got to prosecute Dumbledore and his 5 cronies. The case will fall apart."

"You can make it fall apart on one of Dumbledore's cronies."

Amelia changed the subject. "Where's Susan?"

"She went to bed earlier. She'd invited Hannah Abbott over tomorrow. Hannah said yes. Susan could hardly contain her excitement. She gets to introduce Harry Potter to her best friend. I'm pleased to finally have a friend that my cousin hasn't scared off. I might have been friends with Neville, but all I remember from that time is my mother pleading to die in my place and being on a toy broom."

"I've invited Neville Longbottom over tomorrow as well. I'll check on some old brooms I have, just in case you want to ride one. I interviewed all your parents' friends. All of them tried to find you. All were blocked. All wrote to you."

"I've never received any mail, except the Hogwarts Invitation letter," Harry said. He was annoyed. "That's something I'll address in the interview."

"If you choose to charge Sirius Black, you have to prosecute."

"I'm not yet 11 years old. How am I expected to know how to prosecute someone?"

"Sirius Black may not have a mind left. He's been exposed to dementors for a decade. The suck the happiness out of a person."

"I want to get hold of the Wills the relevant department has. I can be late to the meeting, can't I?"

"I'll be no more than 20 minutes. Do you want any witnesses?"

"Yes. Keep Sirius out of the chamber. Make it appear as though he'd not around. I want to question Dumbledore, maybe Crouch and definitely Severus Snape. I've part of a letter from my mother. It started talking about him and the rest of it is missing. I think he was there that night and took the missing part."

"It's solid. I can order a raid on his house. I know he rents. I'll need the landlord's permission."

"You have the landlord's permission to search the property." Harry was emphatic. Amelia's monocle fell out. It narrowly missed her coffee.

"There's magic we can use, if we have the part of the letter you do have."

"I'll accompany you. I'm not letting it out of my sight. We know that the Fidelius Charm was cast 24th October 1981. We'll need to show where Sirius was during all that time. Statements that place Sirius throughout those 24 hours, whatever he was doing." Amelia blushed.

"I'll collect those statements over the weekend. We can search Snape's house on Monday. I'll let you entertain Remus Lupin, since you are going to be his boss."

"I've an afternoon appointment with the dentists in Crawley, Monday afternoon."

"I can side-apparate you there," Amelia offered. Harry nodded.

"Does Hogwarts have a rule book?" Harry asked. He was adamant that he wouldn't be going, though he had doubts he'd be able to stay away.

"The rule book and introductory pack should have arrived with your letter. You're like Susan, a legacy student. Since your family is pureblood, your parents would have paid 5000 galleons for your education."

"Somebody took 15000 out of my account," Harry said, sullenly. This was a conversation he was not liking, at all.

"I would have McGonagall and Hagrid as witnesses, too. I want to get them to answer some questions. I'll be delighted to have Hogwarts refund 10000 galleons."

"Yes, please do that and pick up that rule book and introductory pack, too."

"It will be my pleasure." Amelia did not like the fact that she couldn't arrest them, unless she got them off Hogwarts grounds. She wanted a High Inquisitor sent there. She could feel something was wrong with Hogwarts. The Ministry could only send a teacher there, if Hogwarts failed to appoint that professor. The Governors were split 50:50 Light and Dark, despite that only a quarter of students at most came from Dark families. Amelia couldn't work out why Dumbledore would want that split of governors at 6:6. The governors might agree that a High Inquisitor was needed, but would never agree on whom to send.

"Why do you call him You-Know-Who?" Harry asked, breaking Amelia out of her reverie.

"Back in the first War, he made his name a taboo. His wizards and witches would appear near anyone who said it and cast the Killing Curse at whoever had. We're not sure the taboo is not still effective."

Harry said, he would turn in. He headed for his bedroom. Amelia picked up the cups and saucers and went to wash up witch style.

Amelia headed out before Harry awoke. She left the list of the friends of Lily and James Potter on his bedside table. Amelia checked in on Susan and got her up. She was the Lady of the House and on guest welcoming duty. Hannah and Neville had to be greeted as custom and tradition demanded. This would be the first time Susan would be doing a greeting unsupervised. Susan had gulped. Amelia was sure her niece would be fine.

Amelia Bones was dressed in her Ministry finest. Her first task was to charge Dumbledore and his 5 cronies with various offences under the Magical Code. That took all morning. Amelia then apparated to Hogwarts or rather just outside the wards and requested and required the presence of McGonagall and Rubeus Hagrid as witnesses for an unspecified time from 2PM on the first of August 1991. She picked the Intro pack for Harry and notified Hogwarts that his account had been overcharged by 10000 galleons.

Amelia wanted to take another look at the wards surrounding Harry's house. She apparated to a safe spot. He put on a Notice-Me-Not charm and went to investigate. She was sure it was Dumbledore's work. Its shoddy appearance belied a very effective blood magic designed to drain Harry of 80% of his magical power. That coupled with the bindings that were on him made Amelia wonder how Harry Potter could function at all.

Amelia apparated back to her office in the Ministry and gathered Robards and Danielson, two senior aurors she trusted. They portkeyed to Azkaban. The Warden was told they were here to take Sirius Black for trial for attempting to murder Harry Potter. The Warden was to keep the secret and they made him take an Oath. Sirius Black had a cloak placed over his head and was lead away, incommunicado. Underneath the cloak. Sirius Orion Black had a smile on his face for the first time in nearly a decade. Dumbledore had come through at long last. There was a special section devoted to holding high security prisoners. Robards and Danielson would be the only ones who would deal with Sirius Black, until after the trial. Then they both expected Sirius Black to be executed.

Susan had memorized the greeting from a member of a Noble House to those of a Noble and Most Ancient House. She greeted Neville Longbottom and Hannah Abbott in that order. She wondered where Harry was. Greeting over and Harry appeared.

"Hi, I'm Harry Potter and I've lived the past decade with muggles and I can't make head nor tail of the etiquette book I've just bought, so I'd appreciate it, if you'd lead me through the greetings."

Neville and Hannah lead Harry through the various greetings. Hannah did most of the explaining. Neville's jaw had dropped and the boy hadn't managed to bring his mouth together. After the greetings had been done, they went onto drinks, just as though they were adults. They had pumpkin juice rather than alcohol. Harry served the drinks Susan had poured. The four agreed he could do this as he was staying with the Bones and had the higher status.

Harry told them that he had not received a single letter whilst living with his muggle relatives, except for the Hogwarts Invitation Letter. Harry told Neville he'd have enjoyed them being brought up together. Neville explained what had happened to his parents. Harry asked him, if they had known James and Lily were dead. Neville said that they were told it was safe to come out of hiding. Then they were attacked and left insane.

The four played wizarding games; Exploding Snap, Gobstones and Chess. That took them through to lunch, which Harry cooked. That lead to Harry telling them how he was treated, all the things he had to do and showing them his back. That lead to them being sick and having to clean up. Evanesco proved to be a most useful spell. After that Harry and Neville flew on brooms that Susan had brought out. Susan and Hannah refused to believe that Harry had never flown before after watching him. Neville copied everything Harry did.

"Okay, Nev, you've followed me around Bones Manor. How about I follow you around it?" Harry decided to encourage Neville Longbottom. Neville then flew around the Manor as slowly as he possibly could. After a few circuits in which Harry nearly crashed into the furniture several time, he said, "Nev, you've proved how slowly you can go without falling off our brooms, why not try to go as fast as you can?"

Susan and Hannah watched as Neville went around the Manor picking up speed on each circuit. Then they couldn't believe how fast he was going. Far faster than Harry had been going, when he was in the lead. So it was when Amelia returned, accompanied by Augusta Longbottom. Augusta had trouble believing this was the same Neville who was normally so reluctant to do anything.

"Hi, Gran. Me and Harry are racing around a Manor like we did when we were much younger." Neville ground to a halt. Harry nearly ploughed into the back of him, but managed to manoeuver his broom, in time.

"Madam Regent Longbottom, a pleasure to meet you. As I have no memory of flying with Neville, we decided to create some new ones," Harry said, bowing as he said it. They returned the brooms to Susan. Neville thanked Harry and the girls. Harry was pleased to see Neville happy. Neville and his grandmother left. Hannah, it turned out was staying over.

Harry cooked the evening meal. Whilst he was doing that Amelia Bones drew up a contract between Harry Potter and Remus Lupin. She had Harry confirm that he was paying Remus 100 galleons a month, payable on the second of every month to be his tutor in all subjects of the magical curriculum, that he would provide Wolfsbane for three days each month on the days required and provide live in accommodation. Harry confirmed this. He planned to be living with Sirius after his trial on the first of August. Remus Lupin would begin his employment on the first of August. She planned on providing Harry with accommodation for August and have Remus tutor Susan in exchange for Harry staying. She liked this plan. She added that Harry could have up to 3 students his own age tutored with him, by Remus. She planned for the three to be Susan, Hannah and Neville.

Harry spent the evening in his room studying. He read through the rule book that Amelia had brought back from Hogwarts. As a Legacy student, he could choose his own House – few did, because there was a stigma attached – and not go through Sorting. He was immune to expulsion. He could refuse detentions and challenge point deductions. His challenges would be decided by the Board of Governors.

The guide to Wizarding Institutions said that members of the Wizengamot had special clothing. Harry sighed. The amount was 2000 galleons. He'd have to draw more money out from Gringotts. He needed to go back to 4 Privet Drive to order a telescope from Dudley's magazine. He'd write a cheque using his new cheque book. He also realized he'd need to live there to keep the money from the County coming. He'd have to think about that one. Harry read about Hedwig in the History of Magic and decided to name his owl after that noble witch. Harry read up about Unbreakable Oaths.

Amelia presented Harry with the contract for Remus Lupin, the following morning. Harry gave it a cursory glance and signed it. Amelia crowed internally. Harry mentioned his need for an outfit for the Wizengamot. Amelia said she'd take him right away to Gringotts and thence to Madame Malkin. This they did, before Susan and Hannah awoke. Amelia waited for Harry to get measured up by Madam Malkin and pay over 2000 galleons. Madam Malkin actually remembered what the Potter House crest looked like. Harry would have to return Tuesday afternoon for his fitting. Amelia side-apparated Harry back just in time for his meeting with Remus Lupin and went off on her own assignment. Her goal was to be not found by her department, so she wouldn't be forced to release Albus Dumbledore.

Amelia Bones went to the Burrow to talk to Arthur Weasley about raiding the Dark families. She didn't want any of their friends in the Ministry catching wind of it. She was let in by Arthur and entered to the kitchen to overhear Molly Weasley, Arthur's wife, telling Ronald Weasley that he must befriend Harry Potter and make him do what Albus Dumbledore wanted him to. They fell silent once they had spotted her. Amelia was a little disappointed in Arthur that he did not countermand his wife's instructions. It was clear the rumours about who wore the pants in that house were true. In the event, Arthur agreed to raid half a dozen suspected Death Eater properties over Monday and Tuesday.

Susan greeted Remus Lupin and introduced him to Hannah Abbot and a hastily changed Harry Potter.

"I have to say I am delighted to be tutoring you Lady Bones." Remus had not connected who Harry Potter was, when he said that.

"As much a delight as that would be, Mr Lupin, I'm the one hiring you. It must have been a while since you last saw me, Harry James Potter." Harry handed over the contract to a gob-smacked Remus Lupin. He signed the contract, barely looking at the terms.

"You're going to provide Wolfsbane?" Remus asked.

"Yes," Harry replied.

"My father has the recipe. Its inventor Damocles Belby provided him with it, when daddy was going to go into business with him. I can provide that to you, Lord Potter."

Harry planned to write to ask the inventor, Damocles Belby for the recipe, but this was an unexpected bonus. "That will be most acceptable, Heir Abbott."

Hannah would get that recipe from her father. He'd be after a name for ages to help him politically and Harry had the biggest one that she knew of. Hannah's father picked her up before lunch. He dismissed Remus Lupin almost out of hand. The ragged man in well-used clothing wasn't someone he wanted his daughter to be associating with. Harry stayed out of view.

Remus left soon after. Harry did say Remus should attend the Wizengamot proceedings on Wednesday. As Harry showed Remus out, he asked him if he and his father had a secret code they used. I solemnly swear that I am up to no Good and Mischief Managed became part of Harry's knowledge. Remus chuckled, recognizing in Harry's face the same look he'd seen in James' when planning a prank.

Hannah told her father who was also staying. At the mention of the name Harry Potter, Allan Abbott danced a jig of joy. That Harry needed the wolfsbane recipe to impress the tutor Remus Lupin had Allan delirious with happiness. A private tutor for his daughter purchased with a potion recipe was in palm of his hand.

Harry composed a letter asking for the recipe and sent Hedwig off to deliver it. She returned with the recipe and a letter of reply. Mr Belby was delighted that he, Harry Potter, the Boy-Who-Lived, was taking up a position on the side of helping werewolves. Mr Belby included detailed instructions in the brewing of the potion. Hedwig got an extra rasher of bacon for her efforts. By then, Hannah had returned with the recipe her father had. Harry had two recipes and two sets of instructions. The ingredients were the same. So was the length of time the potion needed to be made. The potion had a shelf-life of 96 hours.

Monday morning dawned and with it a rather impatient Harry Potter. Amelia almost laughed. Harry had to go back to 4 Privet Drive and change, pick up some more clothes, order his telescope, write, sign and date his cheque and put his card number and reason for purchase. Harry had decided on 'telescope for school work' as the reason. That's what he did. He also put his dirty clothes into the washing machine. Amelia was interested in how at home in the muggle world Harry was. She suggested he do a reversal spell on the blood ward. Harry did as he was instructed. Almost instantly he got a summons from Mafalda Hopkirk for using underage magic. Mafalda was put out to receive moments later her summons returned with a statement from Amelia Bones that Harry was trying out a spell under her supervision. Harry wondered, when it had been erected. So did Amelia Bones.

The raid on Severus Snape's house was almost anti-climactic. The other sheet of the letter was found. Amelia bagged it for evidence. An auror served Severus with a notice to attend the August meeting of the Wizengamot. Severus checked with Minerva and Hagrid and found they had also been summonsed. Severus almost laughed, when he discovered that Albus Dumbledore was charged with breaking the Stature of Secrecy. That did explain why Albus was nowhere to be found.

Harry showed Amelia his Cupboard under the Stairs. Amelia Bones was moved to a desire to inflict physical harm on the Dursleys. Harry put his clothes in the dryer and Amelia side-apparated him to his dental appointment. Amelia left Harry there. She was going to have words with Mafalda Hopkirk. She put the letter in her Sirius Black case file.

Harry was called into the dental surgery shortly after his appointment time.

"Hello, Harry Potter," Doctor Mrs Granger said. "I'm Helen Granger. Are you afraid of dental surgeries?"

There was a gasp from a girl who looked about 12. She had brown eyes and brunette hair done up in a bun, though it looked like it was trying to make a break for freedom.

"Harry Potter is here," she said. Harry kept his eyes on the girl. It appeared as if she were having a conversation with herself. She had recognized his name. That made her a witch.

"I have never had a dental appointment before. I don't know enough to be afraid. I see the girl recognizes my name."

"That's my daughter Hermione. She's attending a special school this year."

"Hogwarts," Harry said. Helen Granger looked shocked. "You know about Hogwarts?" She continued the examination of Harry's teeth.

"Yes. I received an invitation. My 7 years of education prepaid by my deceased parents at a cost of 5000 galleons or £25000."

"That's what we're going to pay per year."

"That's a lot of money. I'm not going to attend. I'm looking to hire a tutor. It'll be more costly, but I think I shall be fine. I am rather famous."

"We weren't told that we could hire a tutor. It was either attend Hogwarts or Hermione would have her magic bound and we'd all forget we ever knew about magic, according to McGonagall."

"Dumbledore says you have to attend."

"Dumbledore, he's Headmaster and Chief Warlock, isn't he?" Helen asked.

"He is," Harry answered. "There's a meeting that starts at 2pm on Wednesday that he should be presiding over. I want to see how things tick at the heart of the Magical world that I'm about to rejoin. You should come to, Hermione. When did you turn 11?"

"September 19th, last year. I've had special tuition from Dumbledore. Will you be attending the session?"

"That is my plan. When I was doing some shopping, I met up with others and we're going to go watch proceedings. We're currently two boys and two girls. I do have some errands to run, so might not make it before they lock the doors, but I'm going to make every effort to be there. You'll be able to see your hero and mentor in action."

Hermione smiled. She could do that. She might make friends, too. Her, with her buck teeth, as well as unruly hair. Harry ended up not needing any dental work. Harry thought he should get some proper glasses. He mentioned that to Helen Granger, who knew someone, phoned them and made an appointment for him for Thursday.

Amelia had put Mafalda in her place. The detector for magic at 4 Privet Drive would now alert Amelia Bones, directly. She picked Harry up, where she'd dropped him off earlier that afternoon. Harry picked up a ballpoint pen and notebook and wrote Amelia a note, whilst talking about his dental appointment.

Met Hermione Granger, Muggleborn, starting Hogwarts September. Heard her arguing with Dumbledore. How?

Amelia picked up the pen and wrote We'll see what he has on him and investigate

Harry wrote Whatever he's using should be destroyed. Call it, I don't know, a Dark object

Amelia Bones nodded. She chatted with Harry about his plans, conscious that Dumbledore could be listening in. She couldn't insist written forms of communication were used instead of talking, because Dumbledore had Order of Phoenix members in her department. She almost distrusted them more than the Death Eaters that had to be present. She had had real arguments with Susan's parents about their being Order of Phoenix members.

Harry spent Tuesday, aside from the time he spent paying and being fitted for his Wizengamot finery and he admitted he did look the part, with his stomach churning. Even his normally unruly hair settled down to add to the imposing figure Harry believed he'd be when fully grown. He hoped he'd be seen as more dignified than 'cute'. Harry knew it was his birthday and he should receive gifts and cards, but he was so caught up with what he was about to do that he just couldn't keep anything down.

About 1pm on Wednesday, Harry was sitting in Amelia's office thinking that where there's a will, there's a way. Wills. That was it. The Potter and Black Wills. Harry hared off to the sub-department's office. The official there was in no hurry. He took forty minutes and came back with 12 Wills. Harry found a seat and began to look through them. The four Blacks had all died of Dragon Pox. Something seemed off about that, to Harry. He didn't have time to investigate further. Harry didn't understand why the muggle Wills of his Evans grandparents were here. He'd already seen those. The only differences were that he was named as the owner of both 4 Privet Drive and the house Marge Dursley lived in and ran her business from and Dudley didn't have a school fund. That was all left to him, Harry. He'd need a qualified Muggle solicitor to sort out the difference. The Potter Wills were too much legalese for Harry to follow. He couldn't get Lord Charlus' stuff until he was 21, except for his time turner. Harry didn't need too many guesses to think of where that had ended up. Fleamont's stuff could only be accessed when he turned 18. His father's stuff, he had, apart from the house and cloak – Harry had resumed the house. The cloak was probably with the same white bearded wizard Harry suspected as the thief of the time turner. The sum of money in the Vault was fixed at 50000 galleons. His family had tried to protect its assets from Dumbledore. Dumbledore had neutralized Harry's access to them. Harry noticed the time. 2:10pm. He had to run to make it to Courtroom 10.

Hermione had made it to the Wizengamot meeting. She met up with Susan, Hannah and Neville. She made a complete hash of the greetings. Only their promises to Harry to go easy on her, spared Hermione severe recriminations. Remus Lupin sat with them, too. Amelia noticed Harry's absence. He wouldn't be the first wizard of any age to be struck down by panic. Addressing the full Wizengamot was a stressful event. Amelia thought she was immune to the pressure, so often had she prosecuted cases. She was determined to give Harry his twenty minutes.

By the time the cases against the six defendants collapsed, and Amelia made sure it wasn't against Dumbledore, Amelia had given Harry his 20 minutes and slightly more. She had been eviscerated by Dumbledore's answers. Augusta Longbottom was still acting Chief Warlock. Amelia noticed Harry climbing into his seat, clutching a dozen fairly large files.

Albus Dumbledore noticed and towards Harry Potter on his seat.

"Harry, you are in my seat."

"Lady Regent Longbottom, Acting Chief Warlock, I, Harry James Potter, bring suit against Sirius Orion Black for his attempted murder of me aged 15 months whilst in the service of You-Know-Who."

"Are you bringing suit against me? Please vacate my seat." Dumbledore was getting slightly aggravated. He had not expected Amelia Bones to try to actually pull this stunt on him.

"No, Suit against you is next month," Harry said, a bit shrilly. The Chamber erupted into laughter at the idea of a child bringing a case against the great Albus Dumbledore. Harry held up his head of house ring. It appeared on his finger and filled the chamber with its light. "I am Lord Harry James Potter, Head of the Noble and Most Ancient House of Potter confirmed holder of these Wizengamot seats by right of inheritance and by conquest by Lady Magic herself. You, Lord Dumbledore, will give account of your illegal holding of these seats, one day, but not today. Take your place on the Witness stand. Sirius Black is not able to be with us today." There was more laughter in the Chamber. "As he is on trial for his life, you'd think he'd make the effort to attend, wouldn't you?" More laughter. Dumbledore liked theatrics. This would prove entertaining when it broke all over Amelia Bones' head.

Harry summoned the clerk of the Wizengamot to add 12 Wills and his part of the letter from his mother to the other sheet Amelia Bones had already handed over. These documents were formally accepted into the case as evidence.

"Lord Dumbledore, when did it come to your attention that Sirius Black was Lord Thingy's spy in your Order of the Phoenix?"

"I'm sorry but until your parents' murders, I had no idea that Sirius Black had betrayed them."

"Wasn't he the spy you discovered in 1979 whilst interviewing Trelawney?"

"No, that was another."


"As I have said a number of times before, it was Severus Snape who went on to spy for me at great personal risk."

"Spy for you, yes. Rather than for us. Ever told anyone what exactly Severus Snape has done for you."

"I don't care for your implications."

"No matter, I'll be questioning him later."

"No, you won't."

"He's a material witness in this case. That means I shall be asking him a few questions." Harry had always been impressed when the finest legal minds on TV, that he'd overheard, had said things like that. "I'm just mortified that there are things you don't know. I thought you knew everything."

"Sadly, that is not the case."

"So you had no knowledge of any other of You-Know-Who's spies in your organization?"


"That is surprising considering the number of Order members who were killed in their own homes. Doesn't that suggest they were betrayed?"

"Yes, it does. There was no clue as to who it was."

"The fact that all those who were killed opposed the way you were running their war effort, I'd say that was a clue. You performed the Fidelius Charm, when?"

"October 24th."

"Was Sirius Orion Black present?"


"Amelia Bones has already entered into evidence statements from everyone who met with Sirius Black on October 24th. His whereabouts are confirmed for the whole 24 hour period." There were gasps in the Chamber as what that meant sank in.

"On the evening of Halloween 31st October 1981, my parents were murdered And I survived a killing curse at point blank range. Please take us through your actions on that evening."

"I was in my study. I noticed the monitors I had for James Potter had pronounced his demise. I apparated to Hagrid's House on the grounds and side-apparated him to my family manor, in ruins, just behind where your parents lived. Hagrid ran for the house, I apparated into it."

"Did you see You-Know-Who?"


"Did you see or hear Sirius Orion Black or anybody else in the house?"


"When did you leave my house?"

"At about 9:15. I returned to Hogwarts. Hagrid returned a few hours later carrying you on the motorcycle he'd borrowed from Sirius Black. About an hour later I was summoned by the then head of the DMLE Lord Barty Crouch who told me of the arrest of Sirius Black and asked me if I knew he was the Potters Secret Keeper. I said I believed he was."

"Yes, well thank you, Lord Dumbledore. You may step down. I reserve the right to recall you again later in the proceedings."

Dumbledore strode towards his Order of Merlin seat and sat down. Whatever game Amelia was playing had well and truly crashed and burned.

"I call Severus Tobias Snape." Severus took his time to take the witness stand. The brat was as insufferable as his father. This was going to be fun.

"Please state your full name and title," Harry asked.

"Severus Tobias Snape, Lord of the Noble House of Prince. I am Professor of Potions at Hogwarts"

"That is sufficient information. Do you prefer to be addressed as Lord Prince or Professor?"

"Professor," Snape answered, confused as to a Potter being polite to him.

"Professor, did you attend Hogwarts at the same time as Sirius Black?"


"Were you friends?"

"Friends?" Snape hissed. "We were enemies."

"Would Sirius Black ever have told you a secret as a secret keeper."

"No, never."

"Even, if Dumbledore ordered him to?"

"Not even then."

"Thank you, Professor." Snape rose to leave. Harry drew out the moment as the TV shows he'd caught glimpses of had. "One more thing Professor. Were you ever in my parents' house after Halloween 1981?"

"No, I was not." Snape felt triumphant. He'd given a truthful answer that did not help the brat at all.

The clerk brought both sheets of Lily's letter to Harry. Harry found the second part and held it up and asked the clerk to hand it to the witness.

"Do you recognize this part of a letter?"


"It was recovered during a raid on your home address."

"It's inadmissible as evidence," Snape said, anger rising in his voice. "Any raid would need the permission of my landlord."

"Who is that?" Harry asked.

"I don't know. Do you?"

"As a matter of fact I do. I am your landlord, professor. I gave permission for the search. Who wrote this letter?"

"Lily Evans."

"Where's the rest of it?"

"In your parents' house."

"Who else did you see whilst you were in my house and its vicinity?"

"I saw your father's corpse. I kicked it. I saw Peter Pettigrew coming down stairs like he was possessed. He was carrying Dark Lord's cloak and wand. I picked up the part of the letter talking about me and fled as well. I could hear the lumbering oaf of a half-giant's thundering steps on the approach to the house."


"Rubeus Hagrid."

"It seems odd that your Dark Lord did not require Sirius Black close by to punish him for failure should his information prove false."

"You stupid dunderhead. Peter Pettigrew betrayed your parents, not Sirius Black."

"Did you take my father's wand?"

"No, I did not. He had no wand."

"How then did he defend himself?"

"He couldn't. He just died."

"Thank you, professor. You may stand down."

Snape move off to sit in the witness seats.

"I call Minerva McGonagall."

Minerva McGonagall took the witness stand.

"Please state your full name and title."

"I am Minerva McGonagall, Professor of Transfiguration at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Deputy Headmistress of Hogwarts, Head of Gryffindor House and holder of the Order of Merlin(First Class).

"Can you describe what you did on Halloween 1981?"

"I visited with friends. It was late that Dumbledore returned from meeting with the head of the DMLE. He told me the Potters had been murdered and Sirius sent to Azkaban for betraying them. I could not believe that. They had been brothers in all but blood and Sirius was your godfather and Magical Guardian. You had been brought to Hogwarts for your safety.

The following day, I watched your muggle relatives on Dumbledore's orders. I told him that they were the worst sort of muggles and protested his leaving of you on the doorstep with a letter. Hagrid was riding that motorcycle of Sirius Black. Bringing you to the address."

"What part of your normal duties was leaving a child on a doorstep?"

"I don't understand you."

"Don't you have a department that deals with orphans?"

"Yes, Wizarding Child Services."

"Why weren't they involved?"

"We didn't know who to trust."

"What about taking me to Euphemia's family?"

"They were too dark a family."

"Is that your opinion or what Dumbledore said?" Harry could see Lord Fawley about to let fly with invective. He had to head him off.

"That's something for my case against Dumbledore. Why wasn't I taken to my Godmother Alice Longbottom?"

"They were in hiding."

"I could have stayed safe until they came out of hiding and then be taken there."

"They were attacked."

"When was that?"

"November 6th 1981."

"Why so long after the attack on me and mine? Is there something about the 5th of November that affects the House of Dumbledore?" Harry mumbled.

"I'm sorry, I didn't quite hear that."

"What reason did Dumbledore give for leaving me?"

"He said the protection from your mother's sacrifice would mean you were safe from attack."

"So that was a wardstone and my blood?"


"Blood magic - that's illegal. And a construction I've heard described as shoddy. Can it be put up after I went into the house?"

"No. It has to be in place before you enter the house."

"Did you ever check up on me?"

"No. Dumbledore said you were safe and well."

Harry took off his cloak and shirt and showed his back to the entire chamber. "Does this look like I was safe and well. I was made to do all the chores, cooking, gardening, shopping. I was beaten if I beat my stupid cousin in grades or made a mistake. I went without food and water for days on end. I got sent to my cupboard under the stairs for any infraction."

From the public gallery. A child's voice shouted out, "You were treated worse than I treat my house-elf."

Harry looked up at the child with blond hair and pale features. "Draco. Draco Malfoy."

"Well, Master Draco. Be kinder to your house-elf," Harry said, dressing himself again. People laughed at what Harry had said. Harry had made that 'be kinder' a command from a superior status family.

"Thank you, Professor, you may stand down."

Professor McGonagall joined Severus Snape in the witness area.

"I call Rubeus Hagrid."

Rubeus Hagrid made his way to the witness stand.

"Please state your full name and title."

"I am Rubeus Hagrid, gamekeeper and Keeper of Keys and Grounds of Hogwarts."

"Not a professor."


"Do you have a wand?"

"Had a wand. It was snapped when I was expelled from Hogwarts in 1942. Dumbledore managed to secure the post, after I was expelled."

"Did Dumbledore know you were innocent."

"Course, he knew. Great man Dumbledore. Girl was killed by a creature looking right at her. Acromantula can't kill someone just by looking at them."


"Giant spiders. I found Aragog a mate. Dumbledore's being looking after selling the silk for me. Says there's no market for it."

"You stupid oaf," someone in the chamber said. "Acromantula silk is a prized possession and costs a fortune to buy. You've been had."

"In the nearly 50 years Albus Dumbledore has been everything in the magical world except God or the Minister, he's never cleared your name, got you reinstated to finish your education nor made sure you got a new wand?"

Hagrid sat there, confused. Harry decided to get back to the night in question.

"What happened Halloween 1981?"

"It had just gone 9pm, when Dumbledore turned up. He said James and Lily had been killed and we needed to rescue Harry. That's you." Harry smiled. "He side-apparated me to Dumbledore Manor. I hot foot it to your parents' house. I ran in up the stairs and grabbed you and your basket out of your cot. I was told to go back to Hogwarts with you where you'd be safe. I ran back down stairs, into Sirius who demanded I hand you over as he was your guardian. I said I had orders from Dumbledore to take you to Hogwarts. He relented and loaned me his motorbike. I took you to Hogwarts Halloween night. The following afternoon/night I took you your relatives. I'm afraid I may have said some things in the pub. Got quite drunk. Overcome with grief at the death of James and Lily."

"Who told you that I had survived a killing curse?"

"Dumbledore, I think."

"Thank you, Hagrid, you may step down and join your friends from Hogwarts."

Hagrid joined McGonagall and Snape in the witness area.

"Madam Bones, do you know the name of the Black house-elf?"

"I think its name is Kreacher."

"I call the Black house-elf Kreacher." Kreacher appeared.

"What does the half-blood want?"

"Your help, Kreacher. Please stand by the witness stand." Kreacher did as he was instructed.

"Kreacher, recently 4 members of House Black died."

"Kreacher know this. Mistress know this."


"Walburga Black."

"Is she alive?"

"No, She's a portrait."

"Lady Regent Longbottom, Acting Chief Warlock, I am asking you to treat the evidence of the house-elf as suspect and to take as fact only things you know for a fact."

"So noted, Lord Black." Fortunately, nobody else noticed Augusta's slip.

"The cause of death, Kreacher, is given as Dragon Pox."

"That be not possible, half-blood."

"Why is that Kreacher?"

"Blacks be friends of Charlus Potter. Potters be invented the cure for Dragon Pox. Plenty of bottles of cure in the Manor. Cause of death cannot be Dragon Pox."

"Is that so?"

"It is," both Augusta and Kreacher said.

"In light of that, Acting Chief Warlock, please direct the DMLE to open murder investigations for any Potter or Black said to have died of Dragon Pox."

Before Augusta could rule, Lord Malfoy asked, "Could the death of Abraxas Malfoy be added to those investigations?"

"Of course, Lord Malfoy. Acting Chief Warlock, please add Abraxas Malfoy to the list of named who deaths are to be investigated."

"I shall so direct, Lord Potter."

"How did you know my name?" Lord Malfoy asked.

"You have the bearing of a noble and similarity in appearance to Draco to be no-one else," Harry replied.

"Thank you Kreacher. You may sit in the witness area. I may need you to perform further actions today.

"Very well, half-blood." Kreacher went to sit in the witness area. Harry nodded at Amelia Bones. She nodded at Robards. He went outside and together with Danielson, they brought in a hooded emaciated prisoner, who was fixed into place. The hood was removed to reveal Sirius Orion Black. There were gasps in the chamber.

"Sirius Orion Black, you are charged with the attempted murder of Harry James Potter on the night of the 31st October 1981. How do you plead?"

"Not guilty."

Dumbledore's jaw dropped. Sirius was getting a trial. This was not possible.

"Were you the Secret Keeper?"

"No. I was too obvious. I suggested everyone say they thought I was the secret keeper."

"Who was the Secret Keeper?"

"Peter Pettigrew."

"Hands up anyone who heard a name." Harry wasn't sure this would work, since he'd ended the Fidelius. Severus Snape raised his hand. Harry looked to where Remus was sitting. He was shaking his head. Dumbledore hadn't raised his hand.

"Remus didn't know the secret?"

"We didn't trust him, thought he was the spy in the Order and he was off on a mission for Dumbledore."

"What about Professor Snape?"

"Snivellus? I would never have let him know the secret."

"Don't aurors secure the scene of a crime?"

"Yes, I'd just finished training. I knew that crime scenes had to be secured."

"Yet you let Hagrid take me out of the house. Why did you loan him your motorcycle? Can you apparate?"

"Yes, of course I can apparate."

"So why take the motorcycle?"

"It seemed like a good idea."

"Taking it meant you arrived too late to save James and Lily and provided Hagrid with a way to get back to Hogwarts."

"I'm sorry, pup. Failed James and Lily and you. I'm just grateful Dumbledore got me out after all this time."

"Dumbledore had nothing to do with this. He's known Hagrid's innocent of something that happened nearly 50 years ago and had done nothing to clear him, in all that time. Dumbledore would have left you to rot in Azkaban, until he wanted you out. This is all my idea. You are my godfather and magical guardian."

"Too right, pup. I swore the oath as godfather. If I had betrayed you, I would not be able to cast magic."

A wand was provided. Lumos produced a faint enough glow to prove Sirius was still a wizard.

"Sirius, did you have any family status at the time of your arrest?"

"Yes, I was Heir to the Headship of House Black."

"Who knew that?"

"My grandfather, obviously and the Chief Warlock."

"What benefit does being Heir give you?"

"The right to a full Wizengamot trial in the event of arrest."

"Did you have a trial before the full Wizengamot?"

"No. I had no trial. I was arrested and the next thing I remember is awaking in Azkaban."

"Who was Chief Warlock?"

"Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore."

"Isn't he still Chief Warlock?"


"Who else was responsible for sending you to Azkaban?"

"I don't know. I presume Barty Crouch. All I know is that when he and his wife visited a week later, he didn't come to see me. They came to see his son, who had a trial. He's also called Barty or was; he died a few days later. That was odd. Young Barty was in robust health. He claimed the four who had attacked the Longbottoms did not want to attack."

"You are suggesting that young Barty Crouch was made to attack the Longbottoms? Is that possible?"

"Quite possible, pup. One spell is the Imperius, it's an Unforgiveable. We were using it in the last days of the war at the insistence of Minister Bagnold and Crouch. We had turned the tide against the Death Eaters. We were killing the bastards."

"I take it that did not meet with Dumbledore's approval."

"No, it did not. He raged against both Bagnold and Crouch. Swore to bring them down."

"Is it not unusual for civilians to visit prisoners?"

"Yes, it is forbidden."

Is it certain that Crouch and his wife were the ones who departed?"

"No. There's a potion called Polyjuice that swaps a persons appearance for some other person. It is known that Crouch's wife was dying."

"So Crouch sends my godfather to Azkaban on the say so of Dumbledore and then gets the torturer of my godmother out of Azkaban. This is not acceptable. Acting Chief Warlock please place Barty Crouch under arrest for line theft at the conclusion of today's Wizengamot meeting and search Crouch Manor for his son - visible and invisible." Crouch senior blanched.

"It shall be so, Lord Potter," Augusta said.

"I demand that this farce is ended, right now." Dumbledore was now angry.

"I recall Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore to the witness stand. He is considered a hostile witness. I request that he be restrained." Harry was feeling a little angry himself now. He had to control himself.

"Let's pick this up Lord Dumbledore," Harry said. "You admitted apparating to my room just after 9pm that Halloween. You must have seen Voldemort's interaction with my mother. You saw Voldemort kill my mother. You saw him try to kill me. You saw Pettigrew pick up Voldemort's wand and cloak and flee. You interfered with a crime scene, roping in that oaf Hagrid. You were the reason Sirius Black rode his motorcycle. You were the reason Sirius Black chased after Pettigrew. You sent him to Azkaban so he could not bring me up. You caused the attack on the Longbottoms. You lured them out of hiding. You arranged for them to be hit. Your only mistake was leaving them alive. Bellatrix Lestrange never leaves anyone alive. You placed the wardstone at my relatives before you returned to Hogwarts. You took my blood and that of my father without our permission. You took my father's cloak, an heirloom from my house. You took my great uncle's time turner off his unconscious body during your so-called battle with Grindelwald. I want them back. Today. Now. Before the Wizengamot meeting gets going on our agenda. I'm sure McGonagall, knows where the items are. Acting Chief Warlock please instruct Professor McGonagall to recover my possession from Dumbledore's office at Hogwarts."

"I so direct. Aurors accompany Professor McGonagall to retrieve Lord Potter's possessions."

A phoenix appeared. "Kreacher deal with that phoenix." Kreacher did and the Phoenix vanished. Dumbledore tried to leave the witness stand. "I have not dismissed you, stay where you are," Harry said. Dumbledore had no choice but to obey. Half an hour later, McGonagall returned with the items.

Harry stood up once more, "I ask this Wizengamot to vote on the guilt or innocence of Sirius Orion Black."

The acting Chief Warlock called for the vote. Sirius Orion Black was found not guilty and released. Fudge made a short speech about righting a wrong. The Daily Prophet had pictures of Dumbledore in restraints. The next edition would be explosive. Harry took his seat and waited for the session to officially get under way. Dumbledore resumed his position as Chief Warlock. Amelia Bones took Sirius Black away to get cleaned up. Harry glanced at Augusta Longbottom. He did not imagine the look of sheer fury on her face, directed at Dumbledore.

Harry enjoyed the meeting. That was more than the five up in the public gallery did. Hermione was letting rip on Harry betraying Dumbledore. Lupin silenced her and knocked her out. Harry arranged for Kreacher to pick Sirius up around 8pm and to persuade the portrait to help Sirius. House Black needed to be rebuilt and the portrait and Kreacher had to be a big part of that, whatever had gone on before.

Needless to say, Hermione was hoping mad. First, she woke up in a strange house surrounded by people she didn't trust. Second, Sirius came in. He started to thank Harry. Harry got a wierd look on his face.

"Sirius, you must claim your House ring." Harry said it, in so commanding a manner that Sirius did so and he also claimed his Wizengamot seat.

"That's all very well, but you people have kidnapped me." Hermione Granger was upset. She wanted to go home. These children were just like those at school who had pretended to like her. She wanted to cry. It was not supposed to be like this. Dumbledore had told her that with him as her mentor she would be well-liked and respected.

Harry looked at Susan. She nodded.

"Hermione, why don't you stay over? We've plenty of room. We liked your company." Susan looked defiantly at the others. Hannah nodded. Neville looked alarmed. Harry noticed.

"What's up, Nev?"

"When she greeted me, she took a step back," Neville said, confused.

"Like you had been described to her," Amelia Bones said.

"Yes, just like that Regent Bones," Neville replied. Harry looked at Hermione. She nodded.

"Miss Granger, which house do you think you will go into?" Hannah Abbott asked.

"I want to go into the same House that Albus Dumbledore went into, Gryffindor, Hannah."

Even Harry could see that Hannah was displeased to be treated as an equal by Miss Granger. He looked at Remus Lupin. Remus understood.

"Miss Granger, your would-be mentor failed to mention to you anything about wizarding etiquette. There are social forms to be observed. The only people in this room who are of lesser social standing are you, me and the two Miss Bones'. As Lord Potter's tutor I have a certain standing. Amelia Bones is Regent of House Bones and head of the DMLE, which gives her equal status with the members of the Noble and Most Ancient Houses seated around us. Miss Bones could claim her Noble House ring, if she wished to and this is her House, which give her equal status to the others, given her being our hostess. You, Miss Granger have no status, except that Lord Potter has sponsored you, though he is unaware that is what he's doing, since he is as clueless about Wizarding etiquette as you are. I noticed in my contract that I am also to provide tutoring to an additional three children. Lord Potter has given me back a friend I thought I had lost forever, so I am willing to add an extra pupil to the number, Miss Granger."

"Thank you, Mr Lupin," Hermione said. "I love finding out about new things. I accept your offer." Hermione was pleased. She would be able to get close to both Harry and Neville.

"No offence, Moony, but I heard that Narcissa is the best authority on wizarding etiquette and I wanted to hire her."

Sirius had chosen that moment to take a big sip of pumpkin juice. He now spewed that over the table through his nostrils.

"Pup, my cousin is no friend of Light," Sirius said.

"I don't know, Sirius. Harry had Lord Malfoy practically eating out of his hand," Amelia said. "The way he accepted adding a Malfoy to the investigation. You've added a lot of work to my schedule, Harry. I think Lord Malfoy would be more than willing to allow his wife tutor the Boy-Who-Lived."

"Lord Lucius Malfoy is a Death Eater. One of You-Know-Who's closest followers. The way you got Kreacher to do what you wanted was more impressive, pup."

"What is Kreacher?" Hermione asked.

"It is a House-Elf, Hermione, the worst ill-tempered servant House Black has ever had," Sirius said, contemptuously.

"Kreacher like anyone in your family," Harry asked.

"My brother Regulus, who is dead and my mother, who is also dead, apparently and now is a portrait and not someone I ever wished to see again, living or dead."

"Does you mother listen to Kreacher?"

"I suppose she does," Sirius said, not all convinced.

"We shall tell Kreacher that we want to build a House Black that Master Regulus would be proud of."

"Lord Black, you need a steward. You will also face disciplinary charges for failing to secure a crime scene as an auror. You still are an auror. You will be informed when the hearing will take place," Amelia said in her role as Head of the DMLE. "Miss Granger, I have sent an owl to your address, letting your parents know you are sleeping over with friends."

Sirius decided that appointing Remus as his steward was the right thing to do. He would also take over paying for the costs of Harry's education. Harry remembered Hagrid.

"You'll get Hagrid sorted out, won't you Madam Bones?" Harry asked.

"I can get that sorted. You've an interview with the Daily Prophet coming up and you've given them and everyone else an explosive story. Do you want me there?"

"Yes, I do, if you can make the time. As you said, I've given you a great deal of work to do."

"Yes, Lord Potter, you have."

They were saved from having an acrimonious conversation as Kreacher appeared. The house-elf grabbed Sirius and Harry and Remus grabbed hold as well. The four vanished.

They reappeared in a stairwell on the first floor, opposite a portrait of Sirius' mother.

"The blood traitor returns," the portrait of Walburga Black began. Sirius held up the head of house ring and Walburga fell silent.

"Your son, Lady Black spent a decade in Azkaban on the say so of Dumbledore. Four members of House Black were murdered earlier this year. Murdered, I believe on the orders of Albus Dumbledore. One member of the House was removed, one is a Death Eater and another is married to one. Your son was a Death Eater. He, too is dead. He appears to have had a change of heart and gave Kreacher instructions as to what he wanted House Black to be. I say we make House Black a House to be feared once more and bring those who were responsible for four deaths of members of House Black to Black Justice." Harry was reasonable sure that Black Justice involved a lot of pain and suffering. He thought that would pay Dumbledore back for all the pain that had been inflicted on him.

"Sirius, House Black is now in your care. Your godson is right. Our House needs to become feared once more. Regulus died because he turned against the Dark Lord. Well and good. That is what House Black shall be; against the Dark Lord. Sirius, you must become well. Appoint a steward and go for a year to our health spa in the south of France. Your Godson is correct. We must rebuild our strength. Kreacher, make Grimmauld Place a Manor House worthy of the Lord of House Black."

"Remus, I will take over paying for the contract you have with Harry. You'll be having quarters here as Steward of House Black. Pay is 2000 galleons a month. That includes attending Wizengamot meetings in my stead."

"Harry's paying me 100 galleons a month and 3 potions of wolfsbane a month."

"Making Wolfsbane, Harry?" Sirius queried.

"It's a recipe and I'm good with those," Harry deadpanned.

"I accept your offer, Sirius." The two men clasped arms in agreement.

"What of Bellatrix, Harry?" Sirius enquired. "She's the Death Eater cousin. Married to another Death Eater."

"Annul the marriage and then cast her out of House Black." Harry wasn't sure he'd used 'annul' correctly. He figured he must have, since that's what Sirius proceeded to do.

"I'll see you Remus, tomorrow morning at 9 outside Madame Malkins."

"Don't be daft, Sirius. You can't stay here tonight. Amelia has set up a room for you. Let's give Kreacher a chance to do some cleaning. Your mother's portrait can think about the things we all need to do and tell us what she thinks, later."

Kreacher looked like he was going to through a fit. Harry thought of something to say.

"You've been brilliant today. Your words at the trial. The way you sent that phoenix packing. You were right on time to pick Sirius up this evening. Sirius is very tired, Kreacher. He's been in Azkaban for a long time. That makes a person weak. He'll be better after a good night's sleep. Kreacher, you have served House Black well. Thank you."

Kreacher stood up straighter, as a result of the praise. Harry looked at Sirius.

"Kreacher, you have my thanks as both Sirius Orion Black and as Head of House." Kreacher smiled. Sirius looked pleased, too. Moments later Sirius, Remus and Harry returned to Bones Manor.

Amelia said," I wasn't expecting you back, Sirius."

"The offer of a bed here was too good to turn down, especially after I remembered my bed was a torture rack – literally." Sirius turned to go up to bed. He seemed to know his way around. Then he stopped and said, "Remus Lupin is now my Steward."

More paperwork for Amelia Bones. She sighed. Tomorrow, she'd file the notification of a steward for House Black, accompany Harry for his interview with the Daily Prophet and take him to his eye test at the muggle glasses place. The issue no-one had addressed was how this would impact the Minister. Cornelius Fudge had become Minister in the wake of Bagnold's disappearance. He'd arrested Sirius Black and not done the standard tests on the wand. He'd arrested the four Death Eaters who had attacked the Longbottoms. He'd done the standard tests on them. How would Albus Dumbledore react? That thought, Amelia was the question.

The man in question had a lemon drop to soothe his disposition. He'd had a bad day. He'd had a bad few days. He'd lost his device to listen into other people's conversations. Harry Potter had regained two of his family heirlooms. How? He had at first thought Tom had taken control, but there were things only Charlus Potter knew. How had he summoned that ghost? Did he have the Resurrection stone?

Hagrid had enlisted the services of Ted Tonks to sue him for the moneys made from the acromantula silk. Minerva was threatening to resign, unless Albus came clean. Dumbledore knew he couldn't confundus her again, not without breaking her. Snape was spitting blood. Potter had practically accused him of murdering his parents and others on his, Dumbledore's, orders. Potter was not coming to Hogwarts. That would not do. Albus had gone to great lengths to bring Tom into the school to test Harry. Harry must attend Hogwarts. There was no leeway. Albus had to know more about the protection Lily had given Harry. That was, of course, so he could lift it. Harry was a pig raised to slaughter. It wouldn't do to have him survive, again. Sirius getting freed was more of an issue than having his own reputation trashed. Albus had never really worried about it. Reputation was something he could rebuild, easily. Amelia Bones was becoming an issue, as well. It was time for Snape to have words with Yaxley to kill her.

Sirius was supposed to have escaped on Albus' timetable. Albus could talk to Fudge, playing up the risk that Harry Potter posed. Sirius wasn't suitable as a guardian for Harry. He wouldn't be able to provide guidance the way Albus Dumbledore could. Albus didn't intend to provide any guidance at all, but Fudge was far too stupid to realise that.

Albus had the monthly governors meeting to prepare for. That was on the morrow. Minerva hadn't provided him with the list of new governors. That didn't matter. Dumbledore always had the number he needed to stop Snape from being fired. That happened this time every year. Minerva always tried to get Sybil fired and Divination dropped from the curriculum. That was a perennial as well. There was always a call to audit the books. That always failed. Dumbledore couldn't have anyone prove Hogwarts could educate a lot more muggleborns. The other matter was the money that he and Snape had embezzled. Dumbledore's line was that Hogwarts was poor. He had to make good on that statement. He was ready to deflect questions about poor dear lost Quirinius Quirrell. His sacrifice was for the Greater Good.

August 2nd dawned hot and would get hotter still. Harry attended his Daily Prophet interview with Amelia Bones in tow. Harry stressed the Minister has as the auror he then was to deal with a possible breach of the Statute of Secrecy. It wasn't his fault nobody treated a fellow auror with any respect or propriety. Fudge had ensured that the four Death Eaters captured after the attack on the Longbottoms each had their wand tested for the last few spells and all had trials before the full Wizengamot.

Amelia took Harry back to the Bones Manor and then went into the Ministry. The raid on Crouch House was successful. Barty Crouch Jr was found and he and his father were arrested. Amelia had to be there for the questioning.

Remus taught Harry reducto and then Harry remembered that his new telescope was due for delivery. Remus got to see Privet Drive. The telescope had been delivered and number 6 had accepted delivery. Harry collected it and went into 4 Privet Drive. He showed Remus his cupboard under the stairs. He picked up a letter from his solicitors in Godric's Hollow. Remus raised an eyebrow. Harry got to take his telescope to Bones Manor. The girls loved it. He left them assembling it, whilst Remus took him to Godric's Hollow. They made their way to the solicitors. Somebody had left Harry a present. A moleskin pouch with a book and the figure of a knight. Harry held onto the bag and reached into it and touched the knight. He vanished.

Remus did a quick obliviate on the solicitor and left. He apparated to the Ministry and joined Sirius who was filing the paperwork to take over Harry's contract with Remus and making him the Steward of House Black.

Harry fell over when he arrived where ever it was that he'd arrived.

"Boy, what are you doing …." That was as far as the man got before a cutting curse took his head off. Harry had dropped the knight in grabbing his wand. A couple of Evanescos followed to clean up his mess. Then he read the three spells his mother had left him. He found using a wand made it easier. He let himself out of where ever it was that he was and a few minutes later of staggering around ran into Croaker.

"Lord Potter, do you still have the portkey you used to access the building that was around here somewhere?"

"No, Croaker, I dropped it to kill a man who threatened me," Harry responded, despondently. "I don't even know where I am."

"You're in the Swiss Alps. I was waiting for somebody. I don't think he'll show up, now. I can portkey us both back to the Ministry."

"That would be great. I mislaid Remus Lupin along the way." Croaker laughed. He held out the portkey and said a word. Harry vanished again. He wondered why he hadn't had to say a word to activate his portkey, at least that was what he assumed that it was. He could still see the building, until Croaker had said the word. Harry had noticed FOR THE GREATER GOOD on the building.

Harry found Remus and Amelia at the Ministry. Croaker smoothed everything over by saying," I ran in to Lord Potter. Seemed to have accidentally apparated and not for the first time."

Remus said he'd see take Harry to his eye test. Amelia had to run to attend her first Hogwarts Governors meeting. She'd had to deal with the arrest of both the Crouches. Barty Crouch senior seemed to grasp that this was the end of his career at the Ministry. Amelia did have time to tell Harry that Sirius had filed the necessary paperwork, before returning to Bones Manor. She confidentially shared that Susan and Hannah had taken to mothering Sirius. Harry hoped they were spoiling Sirius rotten, the man could do with spoiling after nearly a decade in Azkaban.

Harry had his eye test, chose new glasses and then returned to Bones Manor. He spent the time comparing the two different Editions of A History of Magic he now possessed. The 14th Edition 1947 was the first published for general readership. The 13th for the select few. The 14th had nothing against Dumbledore or the Dumbledore family. There was the arrest of Aberforth for inappropriate behaviour with a goat. That was treated with sadness in the 14th Edition. It wasn't in the 14th, because it happened after the 13th was printed.

Amelia Bones returned from her Hogwarts Board of Governors meeting, very late, Harry was only still up because he was comparing the pages of the two volumes of the A History of Magic.

"You'll read about it in the Daily Prophet, tomorrow. Albus Dumbledore was fired today from his position as headmaster of Hogwarts."