A/N: This is unedited and random, but hopefully a little bit of fun. I enjoyed it, anyway. Review, I beg of thee. I own nothing.

A Tree

No one questioned that James Potter should receive a Hogwarts letter.

His parents were wealthy, important people. He had a pureblood line traced back as far as anyone could remember... there were myths about people said to be his ancestors. Dumbledore had even met the boy once, and he noticed—as everyone who had met him surely did—that the young wizard with overgrown black hair, exuberance in his voice, and a small frame that could not contain his energy had extraordinary magical potential.

No one questioned that James Potter should receive a Hogwarts letter.

No one questioned that Sirius Black should receive a Hogwarts letter.

Professor McGonagall had strong political convictions, and this was well known, but even the head of Gryffindor house made no objections that the cousin of one of Hogwarts' most troublesome students (the lovely, dangerous Bellatrix Black) should have a place in this school. His occasional outbursts of accidental magic showed that the boy had talent, and he was said to be somewhat mischievous.

Professor Slughorn had collected the boys' cousins, his father and mother, his aunts, and his uncles. Slytherin house had collected every Black on the tapestry (even a few that had been blasted off, decades and decades ago). Sirius Black would do very well in Slytherin, and McGonagall gave it no second thought, when she signed his admittance letter as she always did.

No one questioned that Sirius Black should receive a Hogwarts letter.

No one questioned that Peter Pettigrew should receive a Hogwarts letter.

His parents were both witch and wizard, though the latter was gone before Peter's name was even added to the Enrolled 1971 list. Peter Phillip Pettigrew showed no extraordinary talent, but, from the Healer's reports upon his birth and throughout his childhood check-ups, the boy was declared to be decidedly magic. Average, perhaps, but certainly he was no squib. Boys like him did remarkably well all the time... with hard work, and perhaps the aid of a good study group.

Peter never did find that study group, but he had another group which suited him fine.

Though he was not extremely clever, though his father was no one in particular, though money was tight in the Pettigrew household, and though Peter Phillip had never stood out in any respect, he received his letter on time. And why shouldn't he?

No one questioned that Peter Pettigrew should receive a Hogwarts letter.

However, when, one June afternoon of 1971, Professor Minerva McGonagall waited in the headmaster's office for him to return from a walk so that he might give her the list of new first years, she stumbled upon something that made her question whether one new student ought not to receive the traditional letter at all.

"Remus Lupin" read the name atop one file, splayed out across Professor Dumbledore's desk for all the world to see. And, by chance, she happened to see something on one slip of parchment that made her eyes grow wide.

Professor McGonagall's mother had always wanted Minerva to be a Healer. The job never appealed much to Minerva herself, so after a year or two in training, the witch quit it, resigned to living forever with her mother's subtle jabs and inquiries of "Why aren't you married yet, girl?" In any case, Minerva had spent enough time in the Healer program to know what that page was and to recognize what the symbol in the top right-hand corner meant.

This was a medical document, and the symbol meant that it was the original.

"You stole medical documents from St. Mungo's?" she was practically shrieking to Professor Dumbledore half an hour later, as he calmly restored his papers to order, as though he did not hear her.

"I did not steal them, my dear Professor McGonagall," the old wizard assured her. "I simply asked the wizard in charge to give them to me."


"You HEXED the wizard in charge of documents at St. Mungo's?"

"I prefer 'charmed,' as it evokes a much more serene, less exciting setting, which is quite accurate, I assure you. Healer Shamble was most obliging."

"Albus," began Professor McGonagall, her voice trembling as she struggled to maintain her typical, composed air. "Why on earth would you steal a boy's medical records? Especially those particular records!"

"What about these particular records interests you, Minerva?" asked Dumbledore innocently.

"He was treated for werewolf bites!"

"I was treated for Goblin Influenza once," Dumbledore informed her nostalgically. "It was remarkably uncomfortable," he added, "Especially considering I only had a cold. The Healer was most incompetent and was nearly discharged on my account."

"Albus, you stole medical records!" McGonagall reminded the headmaster. "It's unethical! It's a crime! You'll go to prison! I know about it, so I'll go to prison!"

"No one is going to prison, Minerva," said the other, ever sedate. "As for unethical, I only stole the records to protect them."

"Protect them? But those records are private!"

"Oh, yes, but I was rather afraid that some prying parent with pureblood lineage, a bigoted bent, and a large pocketbook might nosy about and find some way to look into them. I'm afraid that is the world that we live in, sad as the case may be."

"Professor Dumbledore, they have cause to be worried! That boy could pose a serious threat to..."

"He will not," said Dumbledore lightly. "We'll plant a tree."


"We'll plant a tree?"


"A tree?"


"We're going to plant a tree?"

"Professor McGonagall, did you ever take Herbology class?"


"Well you seem to be struggling unnecessarily with the concept of planting a tree. It is a very simple procedure, really, and a witch of your extraordinary talents ought to be able to remember how it is done."

"I don't understand how planting a tree will solve anything! And the parents—they won't allow you to let a boy like that into the school!"

"Which is why I must, unfortunately, keep this boy's medical records a secret."

"But... but..." at a loss for words, Professor McGonagall rubbed her head wearily. "That's unethical," she replied at last.

"As is bigotry," replied Dumbledore, prepared. "I would hardly call it ethical to discriminate against a young, talented boy simply because of an unfortunate health condition."

"This health condition could bite another child's head off!"

"Many of the books in our library could bite a child's head off," said the Headmaster simply. "Indeed, are not most parents proud of their sons or daughters upon hearing that the child has made a house Quidditch team? And yet, Quidditch is a highly dangerous sport... flying about up there, dodging bludgers, diving after snitches. Really, Minerva, I find that wizards, on the whole, thrive on danger. They value it."

"They also value scandal, Albus. Imagine, if this got out... you'd be removed as Headmaster. You could go to Azkaban. You..."

"Once again, my dear Minerva, no one is going to prison. I thank you for your concern, however unnecessary. I have faith that his boy belongs at Hogwarts."

"This boy," repeated McGonagall, sighing. "Very well, Professor. You know that I will not report it, if you believe this is what's best."

"I do."


"A tree, Professor Dumbledore?"

"A tree, yes."

People definitely questioned whether Remus Lupin should receive a Hogwarts letter.

The funny thing is that of the four boys (Mr. Lupin, Mr. Pettigrew, Mr. Black, and Mr. Potter), Remus Lupin was the one who gave the staff the least amount of trouble in his time at Hogwarts.

Then again to be fair, no one questioned that Remus Lupin should be made prefect.

Everyone questioned that James Potter should be made Head Boy.

A/N: Short, pointless, and probably won't receive too many reviews, but I will be positively ecstatic if you leave me one! The next chapter if "Life and Times" will be along VERY shortly! (We're talking hours, not days).

If you read, please review!

Love and cookies,