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 Harry Potter and the Hunt

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PostSubject: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeMon 01 Dec 2008, 12:46 am

Harry Potter continues on in "The Hunt."

Harry and his friends, Ron and Hermione have returned to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry to finish their last year of school together. Near the end of term Harry is faced with his mortal enemy Lord Voldemort once again. During the ensuing battle Harry and the Weasley family suffer a most tragic loss that has caused Harry to become withdrawn. In keeping with their plans Ron and Hermione are to be married the week after end of school and Harry has agreed to be Ron's best man. The happy day arrives but Harry has failed to appear. Leaving no word, Harry has disappeared. Harry has vowed to defeat the Dark Lord once and for all.

And so he begins, "THE HUNT."

Disclaimers: I do not own any of the HP characters and am not making any money from this plot.

The Hunt

Chapter 1

Saw Tooth

It was still misty as Harry knelt in the still dampness of the tall grasses wet from the morning’s dew. “He was here,” he mused as he peered across the small mountain lake. I can still feel him. Now, which way? He rubbed his chin as he looked ahead. Just to his left was the snow capped Saw Tooth; a triple peak formation high in the Blue Mountains. To his right lay the rolling foot hills of the Blues that continued on for miles occasionally cresting into smaller peaks. The lake before him rippled as the wind blew across its placid surface. It was getting colder.

For three years now, he had been tracking him. So close and yet never near enough. Always just ahead of him, it was as if his prey was taunting him, daring him to continue. He thought back as he bitterly remembered what had been done to him, what had been taken away from him. He would not rest until he caught him. He swore this oath to himself everyday and he meant to fulfill it no matter what it cost him as he had paid the price over and over again.

He stood up and closed his eyes as he extended a hand as if to feel for a direction in which to follow. He had found it. Faint though it was he had found it. Opening his eyes, he traced down his arm to where his finger was pointing- Saw Tooth. Fifteen miles away as the crow flies, but he knew it would be much further than that, much further and he was tired.

He clutched his cloak tighter about him as a stiff chill wind suddenly gusted through. It will be cold again tonight, he thought to himself as he stared off to the distance. He did not like the cold. He shivered as a freezing finger of wind found its way through an opening in his cloak. The mist was being blown away from the lake.

As his eye’s swept the sky, clouds as dark as night and full of rain were rolling in with the wind. It was like that in these mountains. The weather was unpredictable. He still had a few more hours before the rain would fall. “Time enough” he thought aloud. Time enough to find shelter and wait out the storm that he knew was coming.

He looked around and found what he sought, a path that would skirt the lake. He hoisted his rucksack to his shoulders and began to walk.

A shrill skree sounded.

He stopped in his tracks as he looked for its source. He smiled to himself as he found it. She was there and coming toward him. He would wait for her. She was his eyes and ears in the sky. Nothing escaped her unless she allowed it. He would wait for her, here.

The tiny speck that appeared in the dismal sky above the lake soared gracefully. Even in the intermittent gusts of wind, she seemed oblivious to its buffering effects. He stood there waiting patiently as she began her slow spiraling descent toward him. He grinned at her as she neared, holding out an arm for her to land on.

There you are,” he said softly as she landed lightly onto his arm. “Have a nice hunt?”

Hedwig nipped his finger affectionately and cooed her assent to him. Harry Potter had been her owner and trusted friend for ten years now. She had watched over him as he grew into manhood and had been his confidant when no one would listen, pained for him when he was hurt. She knew that she would never leave Harry, would never abandon him.

Hagrid had chosen well those many years ago when he first walked into Eelops Owl Emporium. She knew there was something special about Hagrid when he first spied her in her cage. An instant knowledge about how he cared for creatures enveloped her and she wanted to go with him immediately. When Hagrid gave her to Harry, she knew then where she belonged and she would never leave him. Harry was hers.

“We need to find shelter,” Harry said aloud. “The rain will be coming soon and it will be cold again tonight.” Harry heard a soft hoot in his ear and a claw pressed into his shoulder. “Where?’ he asked.

Hedwig hooted once again and pointed North across the lake with her beak.

“I don’t see it.” He said plaintively. Hedwig hooted twice again and then he saw what she was pointing at a small hillock with tree tops just barely visible over the rise. A small hollow inset into the hill side that would shelter from the wind and the trees would shelter from the rain. Harry smiled at her and said his thanks.

The path that Harry had seen was an old and worn animal trail that went around the lake. He was glad to be able to walk for once on a trail that was flat and firm beneath his already aching feet. It had been a tough two weeks climbing ridge line after ridge line, trekking where no paths were to be found and he was thankful for this brief respite. It had only taken him thirty minutes to reach the hollow that Hedwig had pointed out.

He glanced up to the sky once more. The rain would be sooner than he expected and it looked as if he would have to wait out this storm as well. “Was the weather against him too?” he thought to himself. Harry shrugged off the thought just as Hedwig left his shoulder to perch in a nearby tree.

She looked at him dolefully as he hefted his rucksack from his shoulders once more to prepare his camp. Hedwig hooted at him softly to get his attention and then hooted once more.

“Again?” he asked. She hooted three more times to Harry.

Harry looked about him and then replied “Okay then but don’t be to long. It looks like it will be a bad one.”

Hedwig hooted her reply and took off quickly.

He did not know when it had happened or how it had happened, but he knew what Hedwig was saying. He thought back to his years at Privet Drive with his Aunt and Uncle, Petunia and Vernon Dursley. He had always known even then what Hedwig was saying though he had only heard the hoots and the shrill skree, but now there were words in what she was saying. He knew that he could talk to snakes, speaking in Parsel Tongue and he knew that he had inherited that skill from when Lord Voldemort had unsuccessfully tried to kill him so long ago.

Talking to Hedwig was something that he had done everyday since Hagrid had given her to him as a birthday present just before his first term at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Then one day not too many years ago he suddenly realized that he had always been able to talk to her and her to him, and he understood what she was saying. He shrugged off the thought as he unloaded his rucksack and prepared to make his camp.

It took only a few minutes for Harry to set up his small tent and to forage for dry wood to make his campfire when the rain began to fall. Perfect timing, he thought to him self as he sat hunched over his would be campfire. He thought for a few moments and then looked at the pile of small branches and twigs bunched into the small hole that he had dug for his fire and said “Incendio.” The wood burst into flame immediately.

He was startled by a muffled thudding sound just beside him at the same time he heard the familiar whooshing sound of Hedwig’s wings which eased his wariness. Hedwig had dropped a nice plump rabbit onto the ground next to him and hooted her admonishments that he needed to eat. He could not remember when he had last had a good hot meal and was thankful that Hedwig was looking out for him again. Harry would eat well today.

As Harry was finishing the last of the rabbit he realized that Hedwig had not joined him. He looked to the tree where she sat and held the last of the meat to her and said “here I’m full. You have the rest.”

Hedwig looked at him balefully and hooted her reply.

Roughly translated, Harry heard her say “Not after you just ruined a perfectly fat rabbit, besides I already ate thank you.” Harry smiled at her and laughed. She liked her meat a bit on the rare side. He chewed silently on the piece that he had offered her as his thoughts began to drift. He was alone. It had to be that way. He had told himself this nearly everyday since he left his home at #12 Grimmauld Place the day after he graduated from Hogwarts. It seemed like a life time ago but only three years had past since that day.

Night began to fall as the rain continued to steadily pour. Hedwig had done well to spy out this hollow as Harry remained dry and protected from the elements. He sat in silence watching the shadows dance with the flickering flames of the small campfire. All was quiet around him except for the noise of the storm which was somehow subdued by the hillocks that surrounded and formed the small hollow and the stand of fir in which he was safely nestled. The crackling of his small fire permeated the soothing silence and its warmth engulfed him giving Harry a sense of security that he had not felt in a long while. He liked it here.

Harry allowed the peacefulness of his shelter, the campfire, and the naturalness of the storm to carry him away, back to a very similar night nine years ago when Hagrid knocked that stupid door off it's hinges. He was scared straight out of his skin, not to mention just how the Dursley's must have felt, seeing Hagrid's ominous size framed in that doorway searching him out. He wished with all his might to be able to go back to that time when everything was so simple and easy. To relive the amusement, the amazement, and the wonderment that he had felt when that brick wall behind the Leaky Cauldron unfolded itself to reveal Diagon Alley to him for the first time. It was the most amazing thing he had ever seen.

It will be that way again, Hedwig hooted softly to herself as she watched Harry turn and climb into his tent. It will be that way again. Hedwig blinked into the night to rid herself of moisture that had built itself up in her huge round yellow eyes. Owls don't cry. She admonished herself. Hedwig turned away from Harry's tent to stand guard for the night. He will sleep well tonight. She promised herself and silently to him.

Chapter 1 Completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeFri 05 Dec 2008, 12:15 am

The Hunt

Chapter 2

Missy Molly


Ronald Wesley looked up from his copy of the Daily Prophet slightly annoyed. He did not like the sound of her voice.

“Where is Molly!?” she demanded.

Ron’s face turned a shade pinker than normal. “Oh huh,” he was beginning to stammer. Stalling and searching for words.

“Don’t you oh huh, me Ronald Weasley.”

Why did she have to sound like his mother when she was like this? Ron thought to himself and his face turned even another shade darker turning more into a tinge of red. He most certainly did not like how this was going to go. Ron sat in his chair while a lump had formed in his throat as he tried desperately to figure a way out of this one.

“The truth Ron, I want the truth.” Hermione stood before him, red faced with anger and her hands knotted into fists firmly placed on her hips with an expectant look on her face as she watched him squirm in his chair.

“M…mum?” he asked hopefully. He watched as her foot began to tap its cadence into the floor. Nope, not good at all. He thought and he could have sworn that her shade of red was getter brighter by the minute.

Hermione stood there waiting as her foot tapped it’s rhythmic pace counting the seconds down before she would explode on him. Daring him to say another word; daring him to say anything but the truth.

Finally he broke and muttered “she’s with her uncles.” There he had said it. “How do they do it?” he wondered to himself. “Do they go to a special class or something to get a guy to spill everything?” His own Mother could stare you down and then have you confessing to things that you haven’t even done yet. It was amazing and a bit unnerving as well. He was her Husband and he would take it like a man. He squared his shoulders and waited for it.

Hermione’s face reddened even deeper.

Here it comes. He thought to himself and then her shoulders dropped and her fists unclenched. He wasn’t prepared for this to happen. Ron had not expected this to happen. He had braced for the worse.

“How could you have let them take her?’ She asked almost resignedly.

That was it. Ron caved in and his heart melted. He had loved Hermione ever since their first year at Hogwarts. He was a bit slow to catch on to his feelings but they were there. He had only thought that he had a fancy for her. “She’s their niece, Hermione, and they love her nearly as much as we do.” He said as softly as he could, still not getting up from his chair. He didn’t dare chance letting her build up any back steam. “Fred and George would never let anything happen to her; you know that.” He would try common sense with her. She always accepted logic and reason.

“It’s not the point Ron. We were to…,” And Hermione began to sob.

Ron got up from his chair to hold her.

Ronald Weasley and Hermione Granger were married just the week after their Graduation from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry and their daughter Molly was born just ten months later.

Ron’s best man and mate Harry Potter had invited them to stay with him at #12 Grimmauld Place in London after their wedding. Harry had inherited the large house from Sirius Black, Harry’s Godfather just four years earlier.

Sirius Black was killed while fighting Death Eaters at the Ministry of Magic when Lord Voldemort had lured Harry to the room of Prophecies by placing a dream into Harry’s head that his Godfather was being tortured. It was a trap. Harry and fellow members of an illegal school organization known as Dumbledore’s Army entered the Ministry thinking that they were there to rescue Sirius from the torture that Harry had seen in his dream.

Though Harry, Ron, and Hermione had their own struggle at Hogwarts they were able to escape Dolores Umbridge to race to the Ministry. Harry was able to get a message through to members of the Order of the Phoenix by giving a cryptic message to Professor Snape who in turn relayed that message to their headquarters where Sirius was. Sirius jumped to his God Son’s aid and was killed by his own cousin, Bellatrix Lestrange.

Harry had convinced Ron and Hermione to stay with him at his home during their last week of school at Hogwarts. Hermione had decided to continue her education by going to a Muggle University located in London to both Ron’s horror and disbelief. Wasn’t seven years of school enough? Ron himself would be attending Auror training somewhere in London as well. They had argued about this for several days when Harry appealed to their sense of good judgment by pointing out the benefits of living with him. Hermione would be close to both school and her parents. Ron would be close to Auror training and the Ministry. They both would be close to Diagon Alley when shopping for their supplies and needs, and the Burrow was only an apparition away.

And besides, Harry was all alone with all those rooms. Room enough so that if the family wanted to visit, no one would be under foot. Harry had loved the Weasleys and had adopted them as his surrogate family. And Molly Weasley treated Harry as her own son.

When Harry did not show for the wedding Ron and Hermione knew in their hearts that Harry was gone. He would never miss this event unless it was bad. Ron’s oldest brother, Bill, accepted the honor of Best Man at the last moment.

Just after the ceremony Mrs. Weasley pulled her son and new daughter-in-law to the side and away from prying eyes and spoke to them. “Harry left this with me a few days ago,” she said. “He said that if he did not show up, to give you this.” Mrs. Weasley handed Ron an envelope addressed to him and Hermione. Ron took the letter and tore open the envelope and a key and a piece of parchment fell into his hand and he read the note.

Well done Mate!! I wished that I could have been there to be your best man but I’ve a promise that needs kept. It’s best this way. You and Hermione have your own lives to look forward to and I wish you both the best of luck. Enclosed you will find the key to the house. Dobby has agreed to stay on for me, so not to worry. Tell Hermione that I “beat him down.” It was rough getting him to agree and to stay own in my employ. Dobby takes one day off a week, must wear a Butler’s uniform when he is working, and he gets paid twenty galleons a week. He also gets holidays off and 1 weeks vacation each year. I have given him the attic as his own apartment. Well anyway best of luck to you both.

Best wished, Harry

Hermione stared at that note and began to sob.

Mrs. Weasley drew her near and hugged her tightly.

“H…He’s not coming back.” She cried into Mrs. Weasley's shoulder.

“There, there, dear. Don’t be silly. Of course he’s coming back; you’ll see.” Soothed Mrs. Weasley. Molly Weasley had realized that her words were meant more for her than Hermione and bit her lip to stave off her own tears and pains of regret. She had to believe that Harry was coming back if she were to stay strong for the rest of the family.

Just then popping noises were heard in the kitchen.

Hermione ran down the hallway just in time to collide with a fiery little red head of a girl. Molly Ann Weasley. Just a little over two years old and already destined to follow in her uncles’ foot steps.

Fred and George stood there in their dragon hide outfits; beaming at their little niece. Hermione hugged and kissed her daughter as if she had been gone for years and then ran straight at the twins beating them in the chest with her fists nearly hysterical, shouting at them.

“Don’t you ever take her out of this house again. This is the only place where’s she’s safe. Don’t you ev…,” and then she began to sob uncontrollably.

George caught her up and held her as tight as he could while Fred grabbed up his niece to take her to the other room away from the scene. George held her tight and soothed, “Hermione, it’s alright, it’s alright. There, there now, she’s home. Molly’s safe.”

Just in the other room Molly was asking her dad, “What’s wrong with mommy? Is Uncle Harry alright?”

Ron didn’t answer as Fred handed her over to him.

"Have you heard from him then?" Fred asked.

"No." Ron replied. Ron gave Molly a hug and a kiss then sat her down. Patting her on the head he said, "Run along Molly dear. Daddy wants to talk to Uncle Fred." Then in a much softer tone he added, "Go find Dobby. I just bet he has something for you."

Molly looked impish with her sweet smiling face aglow with delight. "Did he find "CookChanks" Hidey spot?" She looked most excited at the prospect of the idea.

"I don't know he may have. Now run along you."

Before he could give her a nudge she took off with her bright red hair flying all about.

"Poor Crookshanks." Fred muttered and then turned back to Ron. "She's so beautiful. She looks just like...,"

“I know." Ron had cut him off from saying it.
"So, lil 'Bro." Fred started off trying to change the subject of Molly. "What’s got Hermione all worked up to a frazzle?"

They could still hear her sobs even though George had managed to placate her somewhat. They were still in the kitchen. Ron turned from looking into the kitchen and replied "Mum, her, and Molly were to go visit the...,"

"Blimey!" Fred exclaimed. He looked so horror struck. "I am so sorry Ron. George and I, we just completely forgot."

Ron placed a hand on Fred's shoulder and squeezed his forgiveness then said, "It’s okay. We're all trying to forget. It doesn't mean that we still don't care or love."

There was another sound of a pop and Dobby appeared. "Sorry, Sirs. Begging your sir's pardon, but Dobby was just wondering Sirs, if something was wrong with Missy Molly..., Sirs?" Dobby was looking up at them with his big green tennis ball sized eyes and a look of concern written across his face. If ever there was a look, Dobby had managed somehow to add the look of pain into his features as if to emphasize his concern over Molly. "Dobby would be most aggrieved if anything was to have happened to his Missy Molly." Looking accusatorially at Fred.

Neither of them answered him.

Dobby searched each of their faces until he was satisfied that neither of them had caused any of Molly's concerns. "Begging your Sirs pardon, Dobby did not mean to accuse Sirs." Dobby began to ring his finely tailored suit as if it were the old tea towel that he had once worn.

Fred reached down with a kindly hand to stop Dobby from what he was doing and said "The sirs would be most aggrieved if anything were to happen to Missy Molly too, Dobby. And I took no offense to your concern for my niece."

Dobby began to sway back and forth on his heels, fretful that he had said something wrong and then he drew himself up to ask, "Sirs, is it Harry Potter, Sirs?"

"No, Dobby. There's still no word yet." Fred had answered him with as kindly a voice he could muster.

Satisfied, Dobby turned to leave when Ron said "Dobby?" He turned to look at Ron.

"Dobby, could you help Molly find Crookshanks please?"

Dobby smiled. He loved to watch the two of them at play with each other. "At once, Mr. Wheezy. At once, Sir." He snapped his fingers and with a pop he was gone.

Chapter 2 Completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeSun 18 Jan 2009, 12:18 am

The Hunt

Chapter 3

Hedwig and Percy

Harry woke up the next morning refreshed from what seemed to be the most peaceful he could ever remember. He did dream though. He dreamt of a peaceful time with no wants and worries. He dreamt of the children he would have and the woman who he would share those dreams with. He was happy and full of life in this dream. He suddenly frowned. He couldn't remember what she looked like or who she was. It bothered him. The rest of the dream was so vivid even the children. No wait. He thought. He never saw their faces. Just the backs of them playing. Why couldn't he remember what she looked like?

Harry crawled from his tent. It was bright outside and the sun warmed the mountain air. He had slept longer than he had wanted to. As he stood and stretched, he was amazed to find that his small sanctuary for the night actually opened to a wide fertile valley high up in the mountains. Why had he not seen this yesterday? He wondered to himself. "Of course the rain clouds made it so dark when he arrived." he had told himself. Hedwig ventured from her perch in the trees to sit on his should while he gauged the length and depth of this hidden valley.

Hedwig hooted softly in his ear and nipped it.

"Yeah, it's beautiful." He said to her.

She hooted once again.

"Yeah you could have a good life and raise a family here." He agreed. Harry measured the size of the valley in the only terms he could understand. It was perhaps six or seven Championship sized Quidditch fields if you laid them side to side with perhaps four wide and three end to end. It was perfect.

It was perfect. Harry began to realize that this was the scene in his dream from last night, come to life. The meadow was blooming with wild flowers, grasses, and other types of greens. There was a scent of Mountain Cedar and Mountain Lilacs alive in the warm breeze. Harry breathed it in as deeply as he could. The serenity of it was nearly intoxicating. He felt transported to a time where there were no troubles. A different time, a time of peace where only he and his family lived, and his wife...,

"Why can't I remember what she looks like?"

"Rubbish!" Harry shouted angrily.

Hedwig hooted her startlement
"It's rubbish. It's all a dream. Wishful thinking, that’s all."

There was a sorrowful note to Hedwig's hoot and she nipped his ear to show him that she did love him and that was all that mattered to her. Harry turned and struck his tent angrily packing his belongings into his rucksack all the while staring at Saw Tooth. He was there alright and he would find him.

Bill Weasley was setting at his desk in the Gringott's Liaison offices located in the Ministry of Magic. He had asked for this move just after he was able to return to work from his recuperation and his Marriage to Fleur. There was a slight knock at the door to his office.

"Bill?" a soft and familiar voice said. He looked up from the papers that he was looking over. It was Fleur herself.

Bill and Fleur Delacour had been married for four years now and were very much in love, and very happy together. She had nearly lost every bit of her French accent thanks to Bill's expert English lessons except for when she was very angry. Her French accent and temper was very much still intact when that happened.

Her visit to the office was not uncommon as she would stop by two or three times a week to bring Bill his lunch and to sit and eat with him. Not too many people wanted to do that, nor did they really want to spend that much time with him either since his run in with Fenrir Greyback. Fenrir Greyback was a notorious werewolf who had mangled Bill's face and had bitten him. Though Greyback had not changed him, Bill's blood was tainted and people were afraid of him.

Bill looked at his watch, it was still mid-morning. "It's not lunch yet, Dear." he said. "What brings you by the office so early?"

"Bill," Fleur began. "Bill, it’s your Mother."

"Mother?" Bill asked. Bill's voice sharpened "Fleur, what's wrong. What’s happened?" Bill was already out of his seat and grabbing for his cloak when Fleur held her hand out to stop him.

"Nothing has happened my Love. But, I am concerned that is all."

"Concerned? But why? “

She was well when I left this morning."

Bill relaxed and began to set back down.

"It's today, and Hermione and little Molly did not appear. And, you know the little one means so much to your mother, and looks so much like...," Fleur could not finish as her voice choked and tears began to fall. "And then Percy...,"

Bill was on his feet as he cut off what she was about to say. "What has he done this time?" he demanded.

"He has done nothing Bill. Your mother is so heart broken that he does not speak to her or visit, or..., Oh Bill, for your Mother, Pease speak to him. Please my love?' Fleur sounded desperate in her pleadings and Bill hated to see the two women in his life like this.

None of the Weasley's had spoken to Percy since the last time he had visited the Burrow nearly four years earlier when Rufus Scrimgouer, the newly appointed Minister of Magic had visited. The visit was under the pretext that they were in the area and that Percy, whom the year before had argued with his family, had wanted to stop in and wish the family a Happy Christmas.

The true purpose of the visit was so that Scrimgouer could speak with Harry as Dumbledore kept preventing that from happening. The argument from the year before was that Cornelius Fudge, then Minister of Magic had convinced the Wizarding world that Harry Potter and Albus Dumbledore were spreading lies and rumor that the Dark lord had returned. After a terrible row with his father, Percy packed his belongings and left the house and, until this meeting had not spoken to any of his family except through a letter sent to Ron congratulating him on becoming a Prefect and to warn Ron against being friends with Harry. Even after all was proven wrong and Lord Voldemort did re-appear Percy still had not returned nor had he spoken to any of his family.

"Bill Please speak to him won't you?" Fleur was almost pleading with him now. "Your mother needs him Bill..., you need him. The family needs him back. Please my Love. You know this to be true." "He wants to come back, Bill Please speak to him."

Bill stood and looked at his wife, and in an even but flat tone asked "How do you know this?" Bill looked at her and waited. "How do you know this?" he asked again. "Have you been speaking to him behind my back?' His voice now so flat it was dangerous. The truth was that Fleur had not spoken to him and she didn't really even know if Percy wanted to come back. But she did know that her Mother-in-Law was slowly being diminished by the crushing weight that her family was slowly being taken away from her and it pained Fleur to set at home and watch this formidable woman fall. "I see it in his eyes Bill, when I come to visit you and he looks at me from his office..," It was a lie but it was all she had. Bill stood up and went to her.

She held onto him and said "You are the eldest. He will listen to you I know this."

"Alright," he said. "I'll speak to him ,but I want you to go home. I don't like Mother being left alone." Fleur pulled away from her husbands arms and smiled. She leaned in to kiss him and said her goodbyes and left. Bill waited to be sure that she had at least left the floor that his office was on and then proceeded slowly down the corridors himself. He wasn't sure how long it took him to reach the Ministers outer offices when he stopped. How was he to handle this? He himself had not spoken to Percy since the Quidditch World Cup five years ago.

Percy had barely looked up from his paper work when a huge fist crashed against his face sending him reeling backwards over his chair. Percy was up in an instant reaching for his wand that lay on top of his desk. "Touch that wand and I'll snap it in half." Bill hissed. His voice steely cold with an iciness that meant what he had just said. The venom that Bill has issued in his voice caused Percy's hand to shoot back away from his wand.

"Now," began Bill, "I want you to listen to me and listen well. Do you hear me boy?' Bill had emphasized the word, boy.

"Do not call me bo...," Another fist smashed into his face breaking his nose on impact as Percy tried to speak
"I said listen to me. I did not say to speak." Bill roared. The anger in his voice was now running unchecked.

The door to the Ministers office had opened at the sounds of the struggle in the outer office. Rufus Scrimgouer appeared in the doorway and scrutinized the scene in front of him with a practiced eye of an ex-Auror. Bill stood glaring and challenging while Percy, sputtering from his broken nose and blood flowing freely from it, stammered, "M Minis...," A third blow sent Percy crashing to the floor.

Rufus Scrimgouer nodded once to Bill, fully comprehending the scene in front of him. Still looking at Bill he said "Do tidy up here when you are finished." And with that he had returned to his office and closed the door behind him.

"Now Perc," Bill's voice had softened. "Are you quite ready to be quiet and listen to me?"

Percy opened his mouth as if to speak closed it, and then nodded his assent.

"Percy the family wants you to come back home. Mother needs you now more than ever." Bill paused for a moment to allow that to sink into Percy's head. And then he added "The whole family needs you now more than ever Percy." Bill continued, "No one blames you, Perc, for how you acted. You were following Fudge's lead and being the obedient junior Assistant that you were. We understood this after a fashion. What we do blame you for...," Bill hesitated to find the right words now as he searched his own feelings to find why he had felt such rage that would have caused him to hit his younger brother. "What I blame you for...," Bill had corrected himself, "What I blame you for is that when you discovered the truth, you did not come back home."

Percy had just managed to right himself and was now standing as Bill continued. "I understand how embarrassed you must have felt Perc. Look at me now, I know." You owe no apology to the family for being a git and we have all been gits a time or two ourselves. The only apology that is owed from you is to Harry for doubting him." Bill had not realized but tears were now streaming down his own face. Fleur was right. He needed his younger brother now more than ever.

Percy was standing fully by now and was stuck by what Bill had said. He had never seen Bill cry. Not once in his whole life and he melted. He had spent all these years in self-censure for treating his family the way he had. Embarrassed by his actions he had convinced himself that none of his family would ever want him to step foot back in the house. He reached out to Bill who grabbed his brother up and hugged him tightly.

Bill pushed him away, wiping his face, he said, "If you a mind to, if you can get away, dinner is at 8 o'clock as always. And do stop by the school to visit Madame Pomfrey. She asks very few questions you know.”

Just then the Minister's office door re-opened and Scrimgouer looked at Percy as if nothing had occurred. “Weasley, I shan't be needing you until Monday after next. You may have a holiday. You have earned it."

Percy did not hesitate. He grabbed up his wand and cloak and dashed out of the office.

The Minister turned to Bill, just as he was waving his wand in the air with a "Scourgify." The office sprang back to its original condition. "He needed that you know." The Minister said.

"Thank you, Rufus."

"Ah, well yes," replied the Minister. "Extreme matters need extreme measures. Good day to you." And with that, Rufus Scrimgouer closed his door once again.

Chapter 3 Completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeSun 18 Jan 2009, 12:25 am

The Hunt

Chapter 4

Coming Home

Harry stood after packing his rucksack and scanned the area to make sure that he had not left anything out. He walked over to his fire pit and knelt down examining the ashes to make sure that there were no burning embers left and then passed his hand over the pit which filled itself immediately.

Hedwig hooted sharply at him just as he did so.

"What?" He asked her. Hedwig let out a string of hoots that to the ordinary person would certainly sound like a scolding, and it was in fact.
"He's at least two days away." Harry complained. "And besides you said nothing yesterday when I lit the fire." Harry though that would justify it and rightly so.

She hooted again and Harry heard her to say "And if you can sense him, then he can sense you too! And yesterday the wind was blowing. The mark of the magic would have gone with the wind."

Harry frowned. He had not thought of that. "Hey wait a minute." He said. "When did you get so smart about magic?" Hedwig had always been more intelligent than the average Owl; more intelligent than any Owl for that matter. But in the last three years or so Hedwig seemed to know more than she should and she seemed more possessive of Harry than ever before. He had not thought about that until just now. A puzzled look formed across his face and then he shrugged it off as he shouldered his pack. Turning to face North, He asked "Are you ready, Girl?"

Hedwig took to the sky as if to answer his question.

Harry made his own path as he crossed the meadow. He wanted to savor the sight and the smells for as long as he could.

Percy did as he was told by Bill and left to see Madame Pomfrey at Hogwarts. As he entered the Hospital Wing, Madame Pomfrey, true to fashion, immediately came from her office and with one look at his face immediately began her scolding. "Heavens, lad, don't you have the sense to duck when a bludger is sent your way?"

Before Percy could answer her question Madame Pomfrey left him at a hospital bed, advising him that she would be right back.

"She still has not changed." Percy mused to himself. He had just seated himself on one of the beds when she returned carrying a smoking potion and a cup which she laid on a small table beside her.

"Now look at me, lad." She said as she raised her wand. "Episkey." Percy's nose had straightened itself out and what pain he had had immediately disappeared.

Percy raised his hand to his nose to see how it felt.

"It's still there if that’s what your wondering." Madame Pomfrey had said, though not unkindly. 'Now let's see about your shirt and cloak." She raised her wand once again, "Scourgify." She directed the tip of her wand over Percy's front cleaning the dried blood from his clothes. "Now I want you to drink this and have a lie down. About an hour should do the trick."
"Yes, ma'am." Percy knew from prior experience that it was best not to argue and with some difficulty he managed to swallow the thick bubbling brew.

Satisfied that Percy had drank down the entire contents of the cup, Madame Pomfrey turned on her heel and went back to her office muttering to herself all the way. "How that boy allowed his brothers to talk him into playing Quidditch is beyond me. And I thought him to be the intelligent one." Percy laid himself down and thought to himself "Nope she hasn't changed. Not one bit."

Hermione was just leaving her morning classroom at the University when she spied Fleur looking lost and bewildered. "Fleur, Fleur over here." She had a hand in the air to wave Fleur down.

As the two neared each other Hermione asked excitedly "Did you speak to him? Will he talk to Percy?"

Fleur reached to Hermione to take some of her books from her and said, "Yes, and I think he will come. I think that this will work."

"Good, then it’s all settled." Hermione paused for a moment and then pursed her lips in thought then said, "This is my last class for today and I still need to speak to the boys about this."

"Fred and George?" Fleur asked.

"Yes those two."

"They will be difficult Hermione." Fleur added. A sly smile came across Hermione's face and she said, "No, I don't thinks so. I happen to have some information about them that they don't want anyone to know about. And...," she added, "I have just the leverage too if that doesn't work."

"This I would like to see Hermione." Fleur said laughingly.

"Good then. Shall we go shopping in Diagon Alley then?" Hermione suggested.

"Yes, let's." Together, they walked around a corner laughing at the future prospects.

Bill was heading back to his office feeling much better and much relieved. He felt as if a huge burden had just been lifted off of his shoulders and the pain that throbbed in his knuckles was well worth the effort.

"Wotcher, Bill."

Bill turned in the Hallway to see Tonks coming towards him. He waited for her to pull along side him and together they continued down the corridor. "You look happy today. Has Remus returned?"

"Nope, not yet." Tonks replied.

"You've heard from him then?"

"Not in the last two months."

"Then why are you so happy then?" Bill asked.

Tonks held her hand up to show Bill her ring. It was a simple ring with a jewel set in the center and it glowed brilliantly.

"Blimey." was all Bill could say for the moment. "Then congratulations are in order?" "This isn't a wedding ring, silly. But it is connected to him. And he has its mate." Tonks supplied. "As long as this stone glows he is okay. And when he comes home..., he comes home to me." "And," She continued, "If he is hurt it will lead me to him. So there’s nothing to worry about."

Everyone knew that Remus Lupin had gone looking for Harry almost a year after he mysteriously vanished. They also knew that he was still alive because when he had turned seventeen Arthur Weasley had placed another hand on Molly's clock with his name on it and it still said "Traveling." as it had ever since he left three years earlier.

Remus would be gone for months at a time and then he would return to tell what he had learned and to discover if any of the others had anything to go on. They had begged him to let Harry "Work it out" on his own but Remus insisted that as he was the last of James' friends it was his duty to watch over Harry as long as he could. Arthur, Bill, Charlie, and Molly tried unsuccessfully to convince him that he had already done that. But secretly Sirius had left Remus a charge that he could not dismiss.

"Mooney, if anything should happen to me I place onto you the same trust that James had given me. I ask that you accept Harry as your God Son and look after him as I know you would do anyways. It was a trust that kept me alive where I should have died. It was a trust that lifted and kept my spirit when none other could. Watch over him, Love him, and protect him. As James had faith and trust in me. I have faith and trust in you. Your friend always in life and in death.”


Tonks and Bill separated to go their own way in the Ministry when Bill called to her, "Dinner at 8 o'clock and ..," he added with a little more vigor, "Percy is coming home."

Hermione and Fleur stepped into the women’s loo and fussed with their hair until it was emptied of all other occupants and then apparated. Moments later they appeared outside of Weasley’s Wizarding Wheezes. Looking at each other and grinning they both stepped inside the shop in Diagon Alley to speak to their two Bother’s-in-Law.

Verity, a young, modest looking sales clerk recognized them immediately and came forward to greet them. “Would you two ladies be looking for Mr. and Mr. Weasley?” She inquired.

“Yes we would, Verity. If they’re in their office then we’ll show ourselves in.” Hermione replied casually.

“They are Mrs. Weasley.” Verity stepped aside and waved a hand showing them the way to the back of the store.

The door was closed so Hermione knocked and waited.

Momentarily Fred appeared at the door. “Hermione, Fleur, come in, come in.” Fred invited them in with a smile.

George, who was setting behind his desk stood immediately as the ladies stepped into the office. Fred had closed the door behind them. “To what do we owe this honor and pleasure of your visit?’ George was asking as he came from around his desk obviously pleased to see the both of them together.

Hermione had that pointed look on her face that stopped George short in his tracks. Before he knew what he was saying George started. “Hermione let me explain…,”

“Explain what George?” Hermione asked a bit confused. George had not answered. She turned to Fred then, “Explain what…, Fred?” Now looking squarely at the both of them she said “George…? Fred…? Explain what? Her next question was directed to the both of them and sounded remarkably like Molly Weasley, boys what have you done?”

Neither of them answered and by this time Hermione had her wand out and was pointing it right at them. “Where is Molly?”

Fred came to his senses first. Hermione didn’t know. Of course she wouldn’t know she was in class all morning. So Fred began to explain. “Ron had to go test…” “So Ron called us to the…” George cut in. “House.” Fred finished. “But we were needed…” “Back here. So we…” George began. “Called Hagrid in…” Fred quipped. “To watch little…,” “Molly.” George finished his brother’s sentence.

Fleur leaned close to Hermione’s ear and whispered something that made the both of them laugh aloud. Hermione turned to Fleur and said “I do agree, they do share one brain. But the question is which one has it today?” They both choked as they tried to stifle their laughter.
The twins looked aghast at each other and then smirked as Fred said, “Hermione that was…,” “So unfair” Both of the twins finished together. The two feigned a hurt look on their faces then broke into smiles and joined the laughter.
It was George that finally asked what had brought the two to Diagon Alley to visit with them and Hermione began to unfold hers and Fleur’s plan for the evening.

When she had finished, Fred spoke out “You’ve got to be joking Hermione. That stupid git?”

It was Fleur who now spoke after exchanging looks with Hermione, “We are not joking. It’s time that Percy comes home.”

George meant to say something but was cut off as Fleur continued with what she had to say.

“Your Mother has already lost Your Father, Charlie, and, and…, and Ginny.”

“Not to mention half of the Prewetts too.” Hermione interjected.
“And…” Fleur continued, “And to have a son that is still alive and un-welcomed by his own brothers is slowly tearing her apart!” Something in the way the twins were looking at her had made Fleur snap as her last words were stinging.

George shot back angrily “If that stupid git had listened to Father, Father would not be dead today!” A white flash rose through the air with a quickness unseen and ended with a resounding smack that jerked George’s face. Fred’s hand went instinctively downward to check for the presence of his left buttock and to ensure its intactness.

Fleur’s face which was normally pale in color and beautiful to look upon was now a lividly bright red. Her features had contorted themselves into a look of pure and unadulterated rage as the truest part of her Veela blood surfaced. Her voice hissed with animalistic venom of pure ice that suggested instant deaths if any were to have moved. She had her wand in hand and it was mere inches from George’s face as she said, “Do not ever blame your brother for the death of your father again. It was not he that killed him. He did not kill Charlie, nor did he kill Ginny. Do not suggest that he had ever supported he-who-must-not-be-named, Do not suggest that it was your brother that lured your Father out the night that he was killed.” The Veela rage suddenly left Fleur as she realized what she was doing and came to her senses.

Fred, George, and Hermione were all taken back by Fleur’s sudden change. George’s cheek was stinging madly as a most prominent impression of Fleur’s hand had emerged where she had struck him. The office was as quiet and still as a vacuum as the occupants of the office stared at each other in an eerie silence.

Chapter 4 Completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeFri 13 Feb 2009, 11:35 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 5

Truths and Frustration

Remus was overdue from checking in with Tonks for nearly a week now. He glanced down to his ring which was glowing with a richly brilliant opalescence and he knew that all was well with her. It was the day after a full moon and he lay in a wooded glen exhausted and his body ached. He needed to rest for at least a few days of which he had none to spare. The night had been long and hard on him this time and his clothes had been ripped to shreds. He knew that he would have to find someplace in which he could replace them but for now he needed rest As he laid where he was he had the faintest of notions that he had smelled a familiar scent to him as he ran through the night. He knew this scent. It had been one that he had followed on other occasions since he began his search for Harry.

Lupin began looking for Harry within a week of Harry’s absence 3 years earlier. For about a year he had only made discreet inquiries through friends and by other means but Harry had completely disappeared. Then after nearly a year He had told Tonks and the Weasley’s that he was going to search out Harry himself. In the beginning though, Remus had imagined that he knew why Harry had left after all he knew the need to isolate one’s self from hardships better than any other. He imagined that he knew exactly how Harry must have felt. He had felt that way himself many, many years earlier. A time so long ago, it seemed that a lifetime had passed. But now, he had been given another chance to a normal, well almost normal life and she would be waiting for him when he returned. He still refused to marry her and he himself didn’t know why.

Remus was thinking of a time so many years prior, a time when he was just fourteen years old. He was thinking of Lily. He had fallen in love with her at first sight. Lupin could still remember those eyes as if he were looking straight into them even today. Her eyes were entrancing. An emerald green color that was as translucent as a sparkling gem that penetrated the soul, captured you, and held you. She knew for what he was without even being told so and she did not care. She laughed at his jokes, teased him about his shyness, and made him feel whole and complete.

He had loved her so much and was afraid for her all the same. He carried in his memory a treasure that could never be shared with any other and while he lay resting he re-opened that memory. He remembered a particular day. It filled his mind with such being. The memory came alive in vivid detail. Her hair was a bright red and it smelled of scented flowers, its braids were intertwined so that it stayed away from her beautiful face and yet somehow managed to frame her eyes. Her eyes were bright and alive and a sparkle danced within them. They were sitting under the very same tree that Harry had liked to sit under when he was troubled. He had said something and she started laughing. He enjoyed her laugh. It sounded like music to him. And then she looked serious, her face had become slightly flushed and then she leaned into him and kissed his lips and he returned her kiss with an ardent passion. Then suddenly he pushed her away. He didn’t want to but something inside of him had said “No, this cannot happen.” He couldn’t let her get that close to him, no one could. He couldn’t risk the chance of her getting hurt. So he had told her a lie. He had told her that he had a girlfriend that waited for him to return each summer. But he was happy when she had asked if they could still be friends. “Very close friends..., the best of friends” he replied to her question.

Remus never regretted that decision because he knew it to be the right one. And he knew that she would be one of his closest friends even when one day she came to him taking his arm as a lady would a gentleman’s on a casual stroll and told him that she would create a potion one day that would cure him and then ran off to her next class. When James his best friend began to date her in their seventh year he felt happy for her and knew that James would love her and protect her to the day he died. He knew this because of the great lengths James had gone through for him so that his monthly sojourn would not go alone. James was kind to her and Remus was thankful for that and he could absolve himself by knowing that she was in good, kind, and decent hands and that James would never alienate her in any way. After all, Remus knew all too well just how infatuated James was with her. Granted, some of his attention getting antics were a bit over done but they were amusing and Lily did eventually notice him if not unkindly at first, but James did grow on you.

His thoughts returned to the here and now as he looked upon his ring once again and thought to him self, Am I making the same mistake again? He was tired and he did need to rest. He needed to sleep, but he needed to work out what he knew about Harry first. He knew how Harry must have felt or so he imagined it so. Harry like he, had lost everything he cared about except that, Harry had been there to watch it all happen. He had watched his mother and father killed, he had watched Sirius get killed, he was there when Arthur Weasley was killed, and he was there when Ginny Weasley was killed. No, Remus could only imagine how Harry must have felt but he could understand the need to be away and the need to re-discover himself Harry had only just returned to the Dursley home at number 4 Privet Drive, when he asked Hedwig if she could take a letter for him. Hedwig hooted her assent and quickly hopped down to Harry’s desk.

“Not right now I still have to write the letter.” Harry said to her as her stroked her head. “It’ll only be just a moment.”

He grinned at her as she went back to her cage to wait for him to finish writing. Harry still had to open his trunk to get his parchment and his ink and quill. He had not even unpacked yet. Harry gathered his writing materials and set down at his desk and began writing.

Remus, I’ve only just gotten home and I need to see you in person. If you can, please meet me at Mrs. Figg’s home here in Surrey. I’m sure that you know where she lives. Meet me at 10:00 o’clock tomorrow morning. Please, I think that this is urgent”.


Harry arrived at Mrs. Figg’s home the following morning to find That Remus was already there and waiting for him in the lounge. Mrs. Figg had prepared a snack tray for the two of them with a pitcher of Pumpkin juice as well. Sensing Harry’s need for Privacy Arabella Figg feigned the need for shopping excused herself and left the room. As she was leaving she took it upon herself to station her many cats about the inside and outside of her home to be on guard should anything ever occur.

Harry was fidgeting with uncertainty of how and where to begin and he wasn’t sure himself if what he wanted to say should be said.

Remus spoke up first. “Harry this is obviously quite important to you so take your time.”

Harry began talking, first looking only to his shoe laces and then before he had known it, he was at the edge of his seat telling his story as he felt it needed to be said. He had realized that he had no one to turn to anymore that could help him figure out his life, no one that he could turn to that could help but he needed to tell someone. He needed to say what he felt and why he felt the way he did. He needed some one to listen and to help sort out his feelings when he thought that Dumbledore’s death had crushed everything, Ginny was there to help but since he had ended their relationship at end of term he felt emptier than he had ever felt before. It was as if not only a carpet had been slipped out from underneath his feet, but that his own soul had been ripped from him and taken away. He felt bereft of any feelings.

Harry told Remus everything that day. He talked until it was late in the evening. He, Harry, told of his memories of the night his parents were killed, his life with the Dursley’s, with Dudley. He told of how he met Ron and the Weasley family and of Hermione. He talked about how he was placed into the Gryffindor house, where the Sorting Hat had first wanted to place him and what it had said to him the day of the sorting. He told of the first time he had met Professor Snape and his feeling about him after Snape had tried to embarrass him.

Throughout the meeting with Harry Remus had remained quiet and attentive. He sensed that Harry was telling him all this for a particular reason and so he let Harry continue undisturbed. Harry told of each of his six yeas while at Hogwarts and how they had been. He told Remus of his first experience on a broomstick and how it made him feel. The freedom that he experienced and felt when he was flying and the pride that he felt when he was selected as the youngest seeker in over a hundred years and how he felt when he discovered that his own father had played on the very same team. Harry had left nothing out of his telling and Lupin felt comforted in his memory that Harry was sharing things with him that should have been shared with his father had they that chance.

When Harry began to tell of his first kiss with Cho Chang the Ravenclaw seeker, He smiled as he remembered how Harry had turned a slight shade of pink in the cheeks, obviously embarrassed by that awkward moment of his first kiss. And then Harry became serious. He, Harry, that is, began telling in intricate detail of every feeling, reaction, thought, and encounter with the Dark Lord Voldemort. He left no emotion out of his story. Nothing was sacred. Remus remembered how he was now at the edge of his seat observing Harry’s face, listening intently to the tones of Harry’s voice, and grasping each of the nuances of Harry’s manner. He continued to remain silent asking no questions even in this area of Harry’s story. There was purpose in Harry telling him all this and he had yet to discover it. He should have sensed it then what Harry was about to do but he had not.

When Harry began telling Lupin of his sixth year the images in Remus’s mind began to take on shape as Harry described in detail after detail about Dumbledore’s discovery about the Horcruxes, and what must be done to defeat Voldemort. The horror of what Voldemort had done to ensure his life had hit Remus like a speeding train and the import of what Harry was saying became crystal clear.

Harry continued on, He wasn’t finished yet. This time he was telling Remus specifically about Ginny and how he had felt about her, the dilemma that he had felt because she was Ron’s sister and the realization that he had always known how he had felt about her and how the enormous truth of it had hit him when he saw her kissing another boy. Now slightly abashed, Harry was more determined to finish what he had to say. Remus could tell that it was getting harder for Harry to continue but he still remained quiet and attentive to Harry’s need.

Harry had finally arrived at what had happened to Dumbledore the night that he was killed. As Remus reflected in his memory of the many times that Harry had to re-tell that moment his story had not changed one word. And then he caught what he was looking for. Harry had ended his story with the exchange that he and Snape had, had while on the grounds at Hogwarts. Harry had told it nearly word for word and action for action. Snape was instructing him. Telling him what he still needed to learn, telling just how and what he needed to do before he could face Voldemort Was it possible that Snape was still a firm member of the Order?

Harry had finally ended his narration by saying “Remus, I’m lost. I don’t know what to do anymore. I know that Professor Dumbledore wants me to find the rest of the Horcruxes…, but I don’t even know where or how to begin.”

Chapter 5 Completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeFri 13 Feb 2009, 11:38 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 6

Dangers in the Path

Harry had hiked on well past noon and as the sun appeared higher in the sky so did the temperature. He was bathed in sweat, his clothes were drenched by his sweat and the muscles in his legs were screaming for a rest.

Just a bit further on. He intoned to himself.

There was a clump of good shade trees just ahead with what looked to be a short climb to get there and he meant to stop just there to rest and to have a late lunch. Hedwig had been out scouting all morning and he’d stay there until she returned. The path that Harry had chosen turned out to be a much steeper incline that he had imagined and much longer. He was only halfway to where he wanted to get to and already his breathing was labored and he was gulping for air. Harry finally reached the crest of the steep incline where he sank to his knees. He was short of breath and breathing very hard darkness was closing in on him as he labored to get a full breath of air. Harry was passing out and he slowly sank into the black void.

When Harry had awakened, the Sun had already gone down and the mountain air had turned frigidly cold. His body ached with every move that he made. To his dismay he felt his muscles begin to tighten and one by one they began to seize up and knot. He tried to move an arm and nearly screamed in the pain as his muscle had totally seized on him and it felt as if it were ripping away from the bone. Quickly he re-thought against any movements as he was now feeling the knots swell up in protest, in his arms, legs and in his chest.

This is madness. He thought to himself as he was forced to set stone stiff as if he were a statue. “Where was Hedwig?” He thought to himself once again, as he was forced to remain in this position. It wasn’t an uncomfortable sitting position but the pebbles beneath his bottom were making for an un-delightful time of it.

Harry was stuck. He couldn’t move without violent protest from his body. As he set there wondering what had become of Hedwig he noticed the stillness of the night. It was very still. The normal night sounds were completely absent now and so was any light. Harry’s alertness came to full effect when he did take notice of just how black the night had become. It was as if he were setting inside of a black void. The night felt dense and thick and it was as if time itself had stopped.

What was that?”

He had thought that he had seen something. But how could he have in this darkness? The thought arrived to him as if it were an after thought. Then he saw it again. A darker than dark movement as if the blackness had its own shadow. So slight was the movement and then it stopped. Harry began to focus with all his might on that one shadow, and there it was it moved again, just an inch or so but it did move.

Where is Hedwig? he thought again.

From the corner of his eye he saw another movement much like the first. There were two of them moving, inching closer to him stopping every few inches as if to study him. They were now easily seen as blackness on blackness and were getting nearer each time. Think, Harry think! His mind was racing now as each of the shadows slipped across the ground now only a few feet away. His inner sense began to run down a mental list of things, of creatures that he had read about.


His mind screamed out its answer to him as the nearer one was just a foot away from his trainers. With each passing moment the creatures were slipping up towards him. Inch by inch they slid nearer and nearer and then they would stop for only a moment of time as if to observe him. Harry was thinking double fast now as he tried to remember what he had read about them.

They normally attack at night…, Attack while you were asleep…, Think! He kept telling himself.

The nearest one was already creeping up over the toe of his trainer when it stopped as if to await the other to catch up.

Attacks at night…, when your asleep…, but I’m not asleep. He said to himself. Just can’t move. Think, you know this, think!

Harry was getting desperate as both Lethifolds were now inching up his legs. Attacks in the dark…, the dark…, LIGHT!

The answer came from somewhere deep in his mind.


Harry had it now, but he needed his wand to make light and the Lethifolds were now at mid shin when they stopped once again. “Accio wand!” Harry’s shout froze the Lethifolds just as they reached his knees. His rucksack began to twitch as his wand sought its way from the pack. Just as his wand flew in front of him the creatures resumed they way over his knees and in that moment Harry shouted “Lumos!” The wand tip ignited into a bright light. Brighter than usual, and the Lethifolds recoiled and retreated instantly from Harry’s legs.

Harry was slowly regaining some use of his right arm as his body began to slowly heat back up with the adrenalin of near panic. Slowly he inched his arm forward wincing in pain as the reluctant muscles of his arm were forced to move. His finger tips reached out for the wand as it lay on the ground still emitting its light. As he reached the wand he began to work it toward his hand until he was able to grasp it firmly.

Expecto Patronum!”

He called forth his Patronus and a silvery wisp emitted from the wand tip forming into his Stag.

“Over there” he told his Patronus and it went charging into the brush.

Harry had heard it continue its crashing through the woods for sometime when it finally came cantering back towards him stopping just at his feet. Satisfied of its purpose, the Stag dipped his large head towards Harry as if in a salute and dissipated into a mist and vanished. Leaving Harry where he still remained setting.

Harry’s arms had sufficiently loosened up to where he could now massage the knots from his arms and legs. He was able to stand up now and he retrieved his wand from the ground where he had dropped it to administer to his severely knotted and most painful muscles. He needed to change his clothes as they were still damp from earlier. He surmised that the wetness of his clothes and the coldness of the night’s air is what had caused his muscles to tighten up on him and he was correct.

Harry had finished the ministering to his aching muscles when he realized that he had not quite made it to the tree stand that had been his destination. Muttering to himself he retrieved his wand and rucksack and went the short distance to where he had originally planned to go. The trees stood denser than he had first thought, and as an added precaution held his wand and muttered “Lumos.” The wand tip ignited once again and he surveyed his surroundings to ensure that there were no more uninvited guests in the area.

Shivering against the cold of the night and the still wet clothes that he had on, his first thought was to prepare a fire for the night to prevent the Lethifolds from returning and to warm himself. His quick search of the area presented a very small area between the trees where he could pitch his small tent and still have adequate clearing in which to build his fire. After a few short moments Harry had a small but warm fire burning, and using the fires light, he set about to prepare his camp. Once his tent was erect he climbed inside of it to change out of his wet clothes into warmer and dryer attire. Having arranged his tent he then set his wet clothes near the fire so that they would be able to day during the night.

Harry had made a quick meal of some dried fruits and nuts all the while wondering about the Lethifolds that had tried to attack him earlier.

They weren’t supposed to live this far north.” He thought to himself as he sat and watched the fires flames dance in the night.

His musings led him back to Ginny and he cursed himself for allowing her to die.

“It was all my fault.” He had told himself.

He could never face Ron nor Mrs. Weasley again.

“If it hadn’t been for me she wouldn’t have died.”

He had told himself this many times since that day. He wouldn’t face them until he…. Harry hid his face in his hands and wept. He would find him and kill him, he swore it to her when he held her body and he had sealed his promise to her when he last kissed her lips. Harry wiped his eyes and looked to the Constellation Orion, to Sirius, and said aloud “I know what kept you alive in prison and that is what’s keeping me alive in mine.” Harry turned to his tent and went to bed.

Chapter 6 Completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeFri 13 Feb 2009, 11:40 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 7

Questions and Answers

Ron had just arrived home when Dobby popped into sight, “Your cloak sir?”

Dobby had offered to take Ron’s cloak for him. Ron, removing his cloak handed it to Dobby when Molly had come racing into the hall squealing with excitement at seeing her father.

“Daddy!” she screamed, running towards him with her arms lifted into the air, anticipating the lift up.

Ron bent low to greet her as she ran up to him, caught her up in one swoop lifting her higher until he had tossed her up in the air and caught her on the way down. She giggled with glee and hugged her daddy and giving him a kiss on the cheek. Ron held her away so that he could get a good look at his daughter and returning her to him, carried her into the sitting room asking along the way “So what did daddy’s little girl do today?”

As Ron carried her to the other room Molly had placed a finger to the corner of her mouth as if in deep thought and then her face brightened.

“Well Uncle Fred and Uncle George came and we pwayed games.”

“What kind of games?” Ron asked, as he had sat down in his favorite armchair and settled Molly into his lap.

“S’poding snaps.” Molly replied. “An’ then we played dwess up with Cookchanks.”

Ron had just barely supressed a groan as he imagined hearing about that from Hermione when she got home. Hermione was sure that Fred and George both were teaching Molly and encouraging her to change Crookshanks color and fur on a daily basis just to annoy her.

“Then Uncle Ha-gid came to pway with me to.” Molly giggled as she continued on. “We made Teecle fudge and then we gave some to Cookchanks.”

Ron frowned at this.

“But he didn’t like it.” Molly had said still telling her daddy about her day.

“Dobby?” Ron had called out.

Dobby appeared with a conspiratorial grin and before Ron could ask, and Dobby said “Dobby has put Mrs. Wheezy’s Crookshanks back to proper order sir and Mr. Hagrid has returned to Hogwarts.”

Dobby was beaming as he looked at Molly and then looked back to Ron. “Would Mr. Wheezy like a butter beer sir?”

Dobby left before Ron could answer.

“Mommy says we’re going to see Gandma Molly today!” Molly was positively aglow with excitement at seeing her Grandmother. “And Uncle Bill and Auntie Fleur are going to be there too.”

Molly was now squirming with delight as she told her father about all the fun that she was going to have especially if Auntie Tonks were to come to. All of a sudden she hopped down and went running through the hall screaming her delight of the upcoming visit to Her Grandma Molly’s house.

Ron, now twenty years old watched as his daughter left the room ecstatic with glee for the promised evening. Never in a million years did he ever imagine, did he ever think, that he would produce something as perfect as…, as a perfect little Angel. He marveled at the thought, at the irony of chance that she was born exactly one year later on the exact same day and at the exact same time that his sister Ginny was killed, and then to look exactly like her too. It was Hermione that had insisted on naming their baby Molly after Ron’s Mother which had affected the entire Weasley family in a way that he could not put into words. It was as if Ginny had been given back to them through something that was as precious as this baby was.

The night of Molly’s birth at the Burrow, which again Hermione insisted that Molly be born there, Hermione was upstairs in Ginny’s old bedroom nursing the new addition to the family when Mrs. Weasley entered the room and sat on the edge of the bed. Leaning over to admire her first Grandchild she instinctively brushed a stray lock of hair from Hermione’s face and then she asked “Why?”

Hermione was perplexed by the question at first and she looked down at Molly as she nursed and replied, “She looks just like Ginny did in her baby pictures…,”

“Yes she does at that.” Mrs. Weasley put in.

“And it was you that gave everything that was Ginny.” Hermione hesitated for a moment then continued. “You gave her who she was. Kind, considerate, pretty, sincere, witty, brave…,” Hermione reached to touch Mrs. Weasley’s face and said “So I gave her,” she nodded to little Molly, “the name of the person who gave us Ginny.”

Mrs. Weasley did not know what to say as she fought back the tears that were trying so hard to flow freely, so she just smiled and mouthed the words “Thank you.” Little Molly had stopped nursing as the two mothers looked towards her. She was sound asleep. Mrs. Weasley held her hands out towards her new grand daughter and said “May I?”

Hermione nodded and shifted so that the Older Molly could lift her up without waking her. Ron, who was watching and listening the whole time just outside the doorway turned to hide the pride that he felt in his wife, for what she has just said to his mother and the tears that were now flowing most freely down his face.

Ron was brought out of his reverie as Dobby announced “Sir, your Butter Beer Sir.”

Ron took the proffered Butter Beer from Dobby and as the Elf turned to leave Ron said “Dobby do you have a moment?”

Dobby stopped and turned “Of course Sir. Dobby always has a moment for Mr. Wheezy sir.” And he remained where he stood awaiting Ron’s further needs.
“Dobby, please, have a seat,” and he gestured towards a chair near him.

“I would like to talk to you Dobby, about Harry Potter if you please.”

Dobby, still not quite accustomed to being treated with respect and dignity, but certainly not as an equal looked anxiously to the chair, and then again to Ron.

“Go on Dobby, please have a seat.”

Ron gestured again trying his best to maintain an air of casualness about him. Dobby looked again to the offered chair and then back to Ron as if to be re-assured that his setting down would be acceptable.

Dobby climbed up into the high backed chair and then eased himself around to a setting position and waited patiently. Dobby was uncertain of if it was okay to set down and was worried that he was doing something quite wrong. His large eyes blinked as he waited for Ron to say something that was obviously on his mind. But Dobby would be a good House Elf and wait.

“Dobby,” began Ron. “Dobby, do you know where Harry has gone to?”

Ron asked the question before and now hoped that he might get another answer.

Dobby blinked again staring directly at Ron and replied. “No sir, Dobby does not know where Mr. Harry Potter has gone to sir.”

Ron was not put off and tried a new question. “So then Dobby, do you know why he left?”

Dobby answered immediately. “Yes Mr. Wheezy. Dobby does know why Mr. Harry Potter has left sir.”

Ah-ha. Ron said to himself. Ron was practicing a line of questioning techniques specific for magical creatures that he had learned in Auror training classes, and now he was going to get somewhere in finding out where Harry had gone to.

Dobby waited patiently as Ron took a nice long swig from his Butter Beer before asking his next question. “Can you tell me then, why Harry has left?” Ron asked his next question.

“Oh yes sir, Mr. Wheezy. Dobby can tell you why sir.” Dobby was smiling now and he was pleased that someone was finally going to ask him why.

Ron sat in his chair and waited for Dobby to continue on but Dobby was just looking at him with a smile on his face. “Well?” Ron asked after a few moments and trying to mask his impatience.

“Sir?” Dobby inquired.

“Aren’t you going to tell me then?”

“Mr. Wheezy has not asked Dobby to tell yet sir and Dobby is waiting sir.” Came the innocent reply.

Ron had almost smacked himself on the forehead as he just remembered that when questioning magical creatures, it was important that one must be precise and explicit with each question asked. It was going to be on his final examination in the upcoming weeks.

“Dobby, please tell me exactly what Harry told you as to why he was leaving if you would?” Ron had hoped that he had phrased the question correctly this time.

Dobby thought it over quickly and then said, “Mr. Harry Potter told Dobby that he was going to hunt the person that kills his Ginny.”

Ron noticed that Dobby had started to rock back and forth in his chair and that it was a sure sign that Dobby was going to revert back to his House Elf conditioning which meant that something was troubling Dobby about the questions he was asking. Ron soothed his voice into a most calming manner which was something else that he had learned, and asked another question changing tact as he did so.

“Dobby, is there something that I should know but because…,” Ron hesitated before saying it, he had known how Dobby felt about Harry, “Because you want so much for Harry to be your Master and you do not want to share your Master’s secrets?”

Dobby looked fretfully worried at that very question and became very agitated and very uncomfortable so he leapt down from his chair and said pointedly, "Dobby is very sorry sir, but Dobby cannot say it sir.”

Just then Ron knew that Harry had told Dobby something else and it worried Dobby tremendously. “That’s quite alright Dobby. Thank you, for taking time to speak with me. Now Missy Molly seems to be awful quiet. Do you think she may be into something Dobby?” Ron had lifted an eyebrow at this suggestion which made Dobby grin.

“Dobby will go look sir and he will put things in proper order sir.” And with a snap of a finger, Dobby disappeared.

Chapter 7 Completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeFri 13 Feb 2009, 11:43 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 8

A Glimpse in the Past

Percy had just entered his apartment in London reeling with anticipation and apprehension about the nights upcoming Dinner at the Burrow. He did feel much better in knowing that he still had a family that wanted him after what he had said to them and how he had treated his father. For four years he regretted what had happened and had been so sure that if he had gone home he would have been thrown out and disowned and he could not bear that to happen and so he never did. He was truly sorry for what he had said and done. He was glad for what Bill had said and done and it rankled him a bit that no one had done that before. He chuckled to himself at how obscene that thought had just sounded. Percy looked about the apartment as his first instinct was to pack immediately and then he thought the better of that impulsive act. “It would be better to ease into the return just now.” He said aloud, more to convince himself of its logic. Deciding on just an overnight bag with a change of clothes or two, he laid his things out on his bed to assess their order in packing.

Professor McGonagal had turned away from her desk to look upon Albus Dumbledore’s Portrait painting as she had done so many times over the last few years when she was troubled. She had been Headmistress ad Hogwarts for four long years now and had aged significantly in her appearance from the stress and the strain of how which the position had been thrust upon her during her first term. The countless meetings with the board and with the Ministry had not gone well for either her, or the school. The Board had voted to close the school and to dismantle the Staff.

The term had abruptly ended four and a half years earlier with the untimely death of the then Headmaster Albus Dumbledore. During those early hours after Dumbledore’s death, the Staff, reeling in their own agony over the great loss, Minerva had found support in the remaining two Heads of House. Professor Sprout of Hufflepuff and Professor Flitwick of Ravenclaw. Surprisingly enough, Professor Horace Slughorn stepped forward and assumed the position of Head of House for Slytherin stood behind her as well. Hagrid had been there at the meeting to show his support as a Professor and as a long time friend of hers too. Though he was not a Head of House he was asked by McGonagal to speak for Gryffindor House. The four assented their support of Minerva but most of all asserted their support of educating the children. They had all voiced their oaths “That as long as one student wanted to learn, they would be there to teach.”

During that summer period four years earlier, the Board handed down their final decision to close Hogwarts. Minerva McGonagal had called the remaining three Heads Of house and Hagrid to her office to give them the bad news as it was now her duty to disband the Staff. Just as she was beginning to issue the orders and instructions an owl had flown through an opened window and landed squarely on top of her notes with a note attached to its leg. McGonagal hastily removed the note and began reading it to herself.
“What does the note say?” Professor Sprout had asked.

“Yes, the note Minerva?’ squeaked Professor Flitwick.

So she read it out loud.

To the current Head of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry,
“My Grandson, Neville Longbottom will be attending Hogwarts next term. We await your reply as to what schoolbooks and supplies he shall need.”

Augusta Longbottom

To the disbelief of the others, it was Professor Slughorn who said it first. “Well Minerva, we have our answer and lesson plans to prepare I suppose.”

To that McGonagal answered more tartly than she had wanted. “This is but one student Horace.” She had barely finished her statement when eleven more owls flew through the window each vying for position to deliver their letters of similar messages.

The owls kept coming all that day, each containing the notes and letters of parents avowing their support and the attendance of their children. As the now four Heads of House, as Professor’s Sprout and Flitwick insisted that of all the Staff remaining none were as true a Gryffindor than Hagrid were in existence, sorted through the pile that had formed on the desk and was now spilling onto the floor. McGonagal turned to face Albus’s portrait just in time to see him wink at her.

Bringing herself back to the present, Minerva McGonagal was awaiting the arrival of Horace Slughorn as she had summoned him to her office earlier. Harry’s disappearance had bothered her but he was already of age but still she felt a sort of obligation to him and she had worried for him as a…, Grandmother would. But of course she would deny that if any were to accuse. She needed the opinion of Slughorn for something that had been bothering her for these past years. Something that was in her recollection but could not discern nor define what it was. The Dark Lord had been vanquished and none of his followers had escaped and yet there was something wrong. She was there, involved in the battle herself and saw Harry defeat Voldemort near the end of his seventh year. But then to be quite certain no one really knew what had happened because when Voldemort had killed the Weasley girl, Ginny, Harry had cried out then shouted an incantation, and then everyone found themselves outside of the Chamber and the doors locked tight.

Horace Slughorn, Potions Master and Deputy Headmaster of Hogwarts arrived in the office out of breath as he had to climb the last of the stairs that he was forced to take. Wiping his forehead with a handkerchief he frowned when he saw the pensieve out of it’s cabinet.

“Ah, there you are Horace.” McGonagal said as she looked up.

Gesturing towards the pensieve Horace said, “Minerva, the boy is gone and so is the Dark Lord. Why do you torment yourself over this?”

“Because Horace, I need to know what happened. Why and how did Potter expel us with such force and ease. He had no wand Horace, no wand.” She had stated her words as if questioning what she had saw with her own eyes. Before Slughorn could reply to her she quickly added, “Horace, Potter was saying something just as he expelled us. I need for you to enter the pensieve yourself and observe. Concentrate on his face, on what he was saying. I fear that…,” She stopped as if afraid that she might be correct in what she was thinking.

Slughorn looked at her for just a moment, studying her face carefully and he could see the worry behind her eyes. “Very well then. If you are certain about this.”

She nodded very gravely at him. Horace stepped to the pensieve and with a deep breath entered the memory of Minerva McGonagal. He had landed into the middle of a heated battle. Spells and curses were flying everywhere. One by one, Slughorn saw members of the Order, Death Eaters, and Aurors falling in the intense battle before him. Then to his astonishment, Voldemort himself arrived. He saw Harry dispatch a nearby Death Eater with such speed that Horace stood rooted with amazement.

"The boy was truly remarkable," he murmured to himself.

As Harry moved to face Voldemort, Slughorn moved as well so that he could watch closely, and then it happened. Ginny Weasley appeared standing as if from nowhere and Voldemort turned on her instantly. Her wand was held high and ready but she did not move.

“Ah, Harry Potter, a sweet, a pet perhaps?” he sneered at Harry daring him to move and then he smiled. “Avada Kadavra.” He snarled, and a green light jetted from his wand towards Ginny.

“No!” screamed Harry as he started towards Ginny.

Slughorn watched as the killing curse arrowed its way towards Ginny, but at the same time a white flash shot past on its way to intercept the green light. Just as the killing curse hit Ginny the White Flash intersected it’s path and Slughorn saw what looked like a burst of white light and then something like a few white feathers drifting to the ground as Ginny Weasley slumped to the floor dead.

Voldemort turned onto Harry in blinding speed only to see a red flash knock his wand from his hand and at the same time golden ropes work their way around him. A stunned look crossed his snake like features as Harry had said nothing, his own wand lay on the ground feet away where he had dropped it when he saw Ginny fall.

Silencio!” was the only thing Harry had said, giving Voldemort no chance to say anything, and then Voldemort went rigid and fell. Slughorn was amazed and stood in awe. Harry had cast multiple wand spells without his wand and without their incantations at the same time.

My god he is truly powerful.” Slughorn uttered to no one but himself.

Harry bent over Voldemort and Slughorn hurried over to observe what it was that Harry was doing. Harry was staring into Voldemort’s eyes and then gave a pushing motion on Voldemort’s chest and then Harry gasped. Slughorn drew nearer but Harry said nothing, he just stared into the eyes and then he pulled back and Slughorn saw him mouthing words to himself “He, He’s a minion. He’s not the one. Its not over.”

Harry then looked up sharply and looked around as members of the Order and Aurors began to draw nearer. He raised an arm and in a sweeping motion Shouted “Expulsium Militi.” Everyone was thrown from the chamber and Slughorn was cast from the memory with such force that he landed harshly onto the floor of Minerva’s office. She rushed to help him up and the color drained from her face when she saw his. He was shaking with fear and sweating profusely. As she held him steady she could feel him quaking and trembling.

"What did you see?” She asked anxiously.

He stared at her blankly and then said “It’s not over.”

“Of course it is man.” She had said sternly but inside, her worst fear had been confirmed. "We all saw the Dementors give him that retched kiss when we were allowed back in.” she said.

Slughorn looked at her forlornly and said “The boy saw something Minerva, in the eyes, and then cast everyone out of the chamber to protect them. The boy saw something!”

Chapter 8 Completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeSun 22 Feb 2009, 11:07 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 9

An Answer for Tonks

Lupin had finally drifted off to sleep wearier of his careful examination of his memories than of his previous night’s transformation, though that did weigh heavily in his exhaustion. Hedwig had sighted him the night of the full moon and followed him to be sure that he did not stray too closely to Harry, though she did not know at the time that it was indeed Lupin. As the night wore on she was forced several times to fly dangerously near enough to lure the werewolf away from where Harry had slept by allowing her scent to attract him. She had, had to do this on several occasions over the past year already. Once she had to actually attack it so that it would pay heed to her and charge after.

The following morning just as the moon waned, Hedwig made a startling discovery. Her werewolf was none other than Remus Lupin. As she sat hidden deep within a tree the werewolf began its transformation back to human form. She had never seen this part of a werewolf before and was rooted in mingled fear and awe as she watched the obvious agony of the change. She had seen him many times in the past when he looked very sick and very tired and now she understood. He had, had to endure the transformation, run all night in search of food, and then suffer once again the agony, the torture of the change all over again. She both pitied him and pined for him, if ever an owl could. As Hedwig watched on Remus fell into an exhaustive sleep. She would stand and watch over him this day.

Remus awoke the following morning rested but still very weak. Somehow he had a most restful night. He had slept thoroughly and deeply having slept all through the day before and through that night. He had no dreams and no worries. It was as if a guardian had stood over him and kept watch. As he sat up he thought that he had seen a white owl fly away. With a shake of his head, he gathered up his tattered cloak intending to proceed on. He was near his goal he had felt it in his bones and he had smelled that all too familiar scent once again during his nights run. Glancing down to his ring as he had come to do more and more often, he stopped. No. he said to himself. I’ll not make this mistake again. He closed his hand as if to embrace the ring and apparated.

Tonks was readying herself for the dinner at the Burrow that she was invited to earlier that day when Remus walked in through the backdoor of her apartment in London. She let out a small gasp as she saw him standing there looking very haggard and unkempt. She had hoped that he did not notice her look of worry as she had seen the cuts and scrapes about his face and the tattered clothing that he now wore. But he had. This was one of the things that he so wanted to spare her from seeing each and every month. He knew that he went through agony at transformations but the look on the faces of his friends and the one’s that he loved dearly was more agonizing and more painful to bear than any transformation. Those he could endure, those were his inflictions alone and it disgusted him to know that he would somehow inflict pain and agony on another. But Tonks had never seen him on a “day after” as he referred it, nor and a second day after for that matter and he now supposed that she ought to see what it was that he was trying so hard to spare her from. Though he did look worse than usual as he had not even washed up yet but it was best that she see him now as it were so that she herself would know what it was that she was bargaining for.

He stood there at the kitchen door and then asked quietly, “Is this what you want, what you’re prepared for?”

There was no hint of malice or coldness in his voice, nor were there any sarcasm. It was a simple but truthful question. Tonks recovered herself quickly and with the softest of smiles took his hand and led him to the table where she sat him down. He remained quiet as he watched her move about the tiny kitchen, gathering up items in which to wash and clean his wounds. She had said nothing to him as she started dabbing a pungent smelling ointment into one of his deeper cuts. As clumsy as she made herself look, she was amazingly deft in her administrations to his wounds. Her hands were both soft and caring; he could feel that much. He could also feel the care and attention that flowed through her. When she had finished cleaning the opened sores, she rounded on him.

“Remus Lupin, if you have not yet learned at your age, how to jump over fences and shrubs instead of running through them…, then no, I don’t want you.”

Remus was stunned by what she had said and then he realized her scold and reached for her. Tonks took his hand and he gently pulled her into his lap.

“Remus, why won’t you marry me?” she asked as she kissed his hand.

Softly Remus replied, “I will.”

Tonks still holding his hand slid to her feet and pulled him up into a quick embrace. Separating herself from him after a moment, she said, “We have a dinner to be at, at the Burrow and you will be wanting to wash up I expect, and you’ll be needing some proper clothes. Now off you go, use my shower.”

Remus only smiled at her and thought to himself, “She hadn’t heard me.”

He used Tonks’ shower as Tonks herself left to fetch some suitable clothes from his own flat. While there she had sorted through his clothes which weren’t many and selected a pair of underclothes, slacks a sweater, and returned back to her apartment before Remus had finished his shower. She knocked on the bathroom door and when he had not answered she let herself in and laid out his change of clothing for him in a neat pile on the sink. Allowing her self only the briefest of looks at the shower curtain it had just occurred to her what he had said. At that very moment, she fought every urge and desire to leap into the shower with him to show him just how much she loved and adored him and how much he meant to her. As she fought off that whim an evil and mischievous grin replaced the excited and anxious smile that she had had. She was going to have her fun at the Burrow.

Lupin grudgingly left the warm, smoothing, and massaging shower and immured himself into his grooming. He desperately needed a shave and his nails could stand a trimming. Carefully, he shaved making sure that he did not make any of those cuts any larger or deeper that they already were, he combed his hair and trimmed his nails. Admiring the thought that Tonks had thought enough to bring his clothes into the bathroom to allow him that much privacy; he quickly dressed in all but his sweater. He had several more cuts and scratches about his back and chest that he would have to ask Tonks to look at before he could finish dressing.

Breaking his self inspection Tonks had called out to him, “Are you about ready in there?”

Rather than reply he quickly gathered up his sweater and his torn rags of clothing and opened the door. She was waiting in the bedroom for him has he grinned and held out her the remains of his clothes, and with a wry grin of his face he said, “It is most definitely an expensive occupation being a werewolf.”

Tonks could not help herself as she exploded in laughter, knocking over a chair as she went to him stopping short as she had now noticed his other wounds. Taking the dirty clothes in one hand she tossed them to a pile and said, “I’ll have to fix those you know, before we leave.”

Back into the kitchen they went, and Remus seated himself into a chair as Tonks gathered her medicinal salves and ointments once again to deep clean and seal his injuries. While she was doing this it had occurred to her that she had ought to catch Remus up on the latest of happenings ending with her telling him of running into Bill Weasley and he telling her of Percy’s coming home and then the invitation to dinner as well. Remus soaked in every word. He had long imagined being able to come home to someone, to be able to chat about the day’s events and concerns, to have a home life, but never thought it possible. The Weasley’s were as close to family than anyone he knew. “Well not anyone,” he told himself as Tonks turned him in his chair to take care of his front. “There was James and Sirius and…,”

“So Bill got through to Percy did he?” Remus asked of Tonks as she was beginning to put away her medicines.

“Molly doesn’t know yet Remus, or at least I don’t think she does. So if he doesn’t show, don’t say anything.”

Tonks had just finished putting everything away and as she turned to face Remus he was already standing and pulling on his sweater, when the clocked chimed. Turning back into character Tonks exclaimed “Wotcher; ‘ere now we’re late!” She gathered up her cloak and moaned, “Blimey, I knew I’ve forgotten something.”

Remus looked amused and said “What, A cloak for me? I’ll be fine, let’s not keep the good Molly waiting dinner just for us.” He extended an arm to her and together they vanished in a pop.

The ladies, Molly, Hermione, and Fleur were bustling about the kitchen getting the dinner ready. Molly was beside herself beaming with having the family together as she directed the two younger Mrs. Weasley’s. “Heaven’s, if I didn’t know each and everyone of your birthday’s…,” Then she looked quite serious for a moment “Dear’s, have I missed a holiday?” She asked in amusement.

The other two were laughing now as Mrs. Weasley promptly sent a bowl of potatoes across the room to where Hermione was standing by the kitchen sink.

“Hermione, be a dear and get those started please.”

Hermione took out her wand and began to direct the potatoes into the sink paying no attention as they started to clean themselves, jumping out of their skins and separating themselves into pieces before diving into a pot of boiling water.

Fleur, who was adding a spice to the thick and rich brown sauce, simply said “We,” and she exchanged looks with Hermione, “Just thought that it would be nice to have the family together again without having to celebrate anything.”

“Yes, we haven’t done this is so long.” Hermione chimed in.

“So Ron, how do you feel about your examinations? You should be about finished with training correct?” Bill had asked as the two were seated in front of the fireplace in the living room.

“Well I’ve gotten top marks in all of my classes, so I think I should do rather well.” Ron answered casually. “But antidotes, is going to be a tough one I think.” Ron continued. “How did you do when you tested on antidotes?”

Bill, whose first job at Gringott’s, had been a Curse Breaker for them and had to take the same Potions and Antidotes class with the Auror’s laughed heartily at the question and answered with “I am still alive aren’t I?”

Ron looked at his older brother and said “Just barely then eh?”

Bill was about to ask what his little niece was up to when as if on cue, she came running and squealing with delight down the stairs. She had been unusually quiet upstairs with her two uncles Fred and George, which in the Weasley family meant nothing good was afoot. As she meant to run past Bill he snaked a long arm out and caught her up by the waist.

“Whoa there little missy Molly,” he said to her as he settled her into his lap. “And where are you off to in such a great hurry?’

“To find Cookchanks.” She said most congenially and with a hint of some criminal intent. She had been waving a small brown stick in her hand that Bill had just noticed.

“Here now, what’s that you have in your hand?” Bill asked.

“It’s my wand.” She replied with glee.

“Can Uncle Bill see your wand?” he asked.

Smiling she held it up for him to see. Bill took the wand from her and examined it. Though talking more to himself than anone in particular, he spoke aloud. “Mahogany, about six inches long.” And as he ran a finger down its length a green spark emitted from its tip. “Merlin’s Beard!” Bill had softly exclaimed. Bill gave the wand a wave and stars of every color began to fill the room.

Molly was clapping her hands with delight and Ron uttered “Oh no.” and glanced surreptitiously towards the kitchen to see if Hermione was watching.

Bill handed the wand back to Molly and asked “What can you do with your wand little Missy?”

Molly took her wand back and jumped off his lap. Putting her finger to the side of her mouth as she always did when in deep thought. She thought about the spells that she had just learned from her Uncles, she let out a small giggle and then looking from the corner of her eye to see if Bill was watching turned to face the end table and pointed her wand and said “Agita Creo.” And the table began to move to where she was moving her wand about.

“Oh no.” Ron groaned again sliding down in his chair as if to hide. This time not even bothering to see if Hermione was looking.

Bill was trying his best to suppress his obvious admiration of his niece and his laughter as Crookshanks had just appeared from around a corner. Molly rounded on him. Looking over her shoulder at Bill with the most deliriously evil and, cutest of mischievous grins on her face, Bill nodded. Bill’s face was now positively red in his attempt to hold back, and she pointed her wand at Crookshanks and waved it “Nova Bestia Rutilus.” Crookshanks instantly turned into a bright red color.

Bill’s body was now convulsing as he clapped a hand over his mouth to hold back the howling laughter that was trying most definitely to escape his mouth.

Ron had groaned another “Oh no,” and sank so low into his chair that he was in danger of falling out of it.

Bill, no longer able to control himself, bursted out in a roar of laughter and Molly herself was giggling with supreme delight, clapping her hands and at the same time causing the wand to emit varied colored sparks and stars.

“What are you all laughing about in there?” Hermione was asking as Bill, whose face was nearly as red as Crookshanks now was, snorted in his attempt to answer her and drying the tears that had come to his face.

“N-n-nothing Her-Hermione.” He had managed to stammer out.

Ron was now hiding his face in his hands trying so hard not to start laughing himself but he failed in his attempt and slid the rest of the way out of his chair onto the floor.

“Yo, yo, your husband needs to learn how to stay in his chair when he dozes off that’s all.” Bill had just managed an answer before Hermione had come into the room. Seeing both Molly and Bill looking at Ron and laughing, she smirked disapprovingly and went back to the kitchen.

Chapter 9 Completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeSun 22 Feb 2009, 11:11 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 10

Wild Chase

Harry woke up the next morning to a cool and crisp day. He was still tired and edgy from the last night’s events but at least the soreness of his muscles had gone away. His fire had died out sometime during the night and he was thankful that the Lethifolds had not returned. He was not sure if the Patronus charm had just merely chased them away or if it had destroyed them, but at the least there were no more attacks and for that he was grateful. Hedwig had not returned yet as he looked about for her and could not find her anywhere in the trees but he wasn’t worried either. He was used to her leaving for a day or two to hunt for her self or hunt for him. She did take care of him he had mused. Oddly enough, he thought that she was much more attached to him since that one day. Harry was now thinking about that too. Since they had arrived in the Blue Mountain range a month ago she was seldom gone from him for more than half a day and he was sure that though he could not see her, she could most certainly see him.

Though Harry was impatient to continue on, as he knew he was close to his destination and perhaps his fate, he had thought it better to perhaps wait here for the day to regain more of his strength and to wait for Hedwig’s return too. Harry looked about his small campsite to find things that could keep him busy. He would have to get some more firewood, build a pit for the fire as he had not done so the previous night, and he wood need to hunt for some fresh food. Water was no problem he could produce that, but something other than water would be better. He had learned from a man that he had met a while back that certain trees in the area had a bark that could be shredded and seeped into a right nice tea. Hickory it was. Hickory tea would sound nice today Harry thought. Harry sat about arranging his camp the way a proper camp should be making his pit, and gathering enough wood for the day and perhaps the night as well. Making sure that all was well he then set out to see what he could find to make a decent meal and to find the Hickory trees.

Harry had emptied his rucksack of its contents and placed his wand in his back pocket where he usually kept it and set out to gather what he could find. He had not gone far in his search when he found several wild herbs and a wild onion patch. The menu for the day was already beginning to form in his head as he pulled at the thyme and marjoram which seemed to grow aplenty, and pulled up several large hand fulls of the onions. He stuffed these into his pack and continued on. Coming to an open area he tripped over a vine and fell. As he was getting up he noticed that he had pulled up a tuber that looked suspicious like a potato. Breaking open the tuber he took a small bite of it to see how it would fit in with his menu. It was not a potato but rather like a cousin to it an its flavor was pleasant enough so adding several of these to his pack his thoughts were turning from a nice hot soup to maybe a stew. He would need some greens for that, a cabbage if he could find any and some carrots to. Harry laughed to himself as he had just imagined himself shopping in the great grocery store of the outdoors and was truly amazed that he was finding all that he needed with relative ease. He had collected enough vegetables and herbs to make enough of his stew for at least two meals and was considering heading back to his camp when he spied the tree that the man had described to him. Using a small pocket knife, Harry separated some of the bark and pulled a wide strip away from the tree. Satisfied with his industry, Harry gathered up his pack a trudged off back to his camp to unload the beginnings of his planned meal.

Once back at his campsite Harry retrieved a large pot from his tent and with his wand tip aimed in the center of the pot he said “ Agua Menti.” Water poured from his wand, and Harry let the pot fill to about half way before settling it to the ground. He was going to place his findings in the water so that they would soak and make the cleaning easier later on. Taking the Bark of the Hickory tree and setting it aside, Harry unceremoniously dumped the contents of his rucksack into the pot gave it a quick swish with his hand and set back off for the next part of his meal. A rabbit or a small game hen would do rather nicely in his stew he thought.

Harry set out once again, looking for his rabbit or the wild hen to add to his meal. It was mid-morning now and the sun had begun to take the chill from the air as he went. As he hiked through the semi-wooded area he began to smell the airs and scents that he had when he discovered his meadow just a few days earlier and his mind soared into the peacefulness of his surroundings allowing him to forget just for the moment his mental aches and pains. He had strayed further out from his campsite on this excursion and in his comfort of the surroundings nearly forgot to keep track of his direction when he stumbled across two field mice completely unaware of his presence.

Taking his wand from his back pocket he aimed at them and whispered “ Petrificus Totalis.” The mice froze instantly in the body binding curse he had learned so many years ago. “This should make Hedwig happy.” He announced to himself as he went to pick them up and add them to his rucksack.

As he drew nearer to where they mice lay a sudden feeling came over him. It was a feeling that he had felt many times over the past few years, one that he did not like. Harry crouched down and reached out with his hand; closing his eyes he sent his senses in search of what he knew he would find. Magic! Harry had stumbled onto a campsite that looked as if it were less than a week old.

Cautiously Harry neared the site and let his senses search out for signs of magical traps or defenses, but he had found none. The magical print that had been left was indeed at least a week old and he smiled. He was nearer than he had hoped for and he would settle the debt that his prey had left him. Harry then sent his mind North to insure himself that his target had not changed course and again he smiled, he was still heading directly for those triple peaks of the Saw Tooth. Harry, having satisfied himself for the time being, collected up Hedwig’s meal of the mice and set off to catch the rest of his meal. As he marched on, Harry allowed the beauty and serenity of the area to lull him back into the happiness that he was feeling about this area.

He had been gone from his camp now for about an hour seeing only a few squirrels and of course Hedwig’s mice when a very large Jack rabbit suddenly stood up on it’s haunches to sniff the air startling Harry more than he had frightened it and before Harry could grab for his wand it tool off bounding through the brush. Harry immediately went after it and the chase was on. The rabbit was leading Harry in and around bushes and through thorned briars that grabbed and cut at Harry’s clothes and skin but Harry kept on. Once the rabbit had stopped so suddenly that Harry lunged right over the top of it in his attempt to grasp a hold of it and as soon as he landed on the ground chest first his dinner bounded off into another direction. Harry gathered himself up and took off at a sprint to catch it up.

The hare would stop as if to wait for him and then leap off before Harry could get near enough to catch it. It was as if the rabbit was taunting him, daring him to try to keep up. Harry had now had his wand out and was going to even the odds to his favor but each time he drew near enough to cast a spell to trap his prey or to at least slow it down his dinner for the day seemed to know which way to evade the spell. The rabbit was slowing though and Harry was catching up to it, and then he had it in his hands but the rabbit took off so quickly through his out stretched hand and right between his legs that Harry’s momentum had caused him to flip head over heels. Harry was both frustrated and laughing at himself now as they chase became more like a Quidditch match to him and the rabbit was his Golden Snitch. Harry scrambled to his feet and he was off like a flash of lightening. He had wished that he had brought his Firebolt with him as his breathing grew harder and ragged. After another ten more minutes the Jack rabbit suddenly disappeared from view leaving no tracks to be followed by and Harry stopped to catch his breath.

Disheartened by the fact that he had lost the match Harry half turned and gave a salute to the vanished hare and said “Good run mate.”

Harry was heading back to his own camp when something thudded to the ground directly in front of him. It was his rabbit and it was dead. Looking around him to see how and where he saw the reason to his delight. Hedwig was lofting downward towards him and settled on his shoulder nipping his ear with her affection for him. She gave him a soft hoot and he turned his head to look at her.

“Are you laughing at me?” he asked in a slightly amused tone.

She hooted again and took off.

“For thirty minutes, you watched me run like an idiot for thirty minutes?’ He was trying to keep a straight face as he scooped up the rabbit to toss into his pack and then headed back to the campsite.

Hedwig returned to his should for a free ride back, and as he walked she hooted cheerfully at him.

He was grinning at her but still wagged a finger under her beak and said sternly “For your information I was not having fun.” He couldn’t help but to laugh when her hoots reminded him of the rabbit causing him to flip over and that he himself was laughing about it too.

Once back at camp Harry set about preparing his meal. He checked the wild vegetables to see if they had soaked long enough and they had. Using his wand he had the veggies washing themselves in the pot as he set another pan with fresh water into the fire pit and started the water to boil. With a quick flourish of the wand, the vegetables leaped into the air slicing and dicing themselves and landing into the new pot to begin boiling themselves. While the pot was boiling Harry cleaned the rabbit and cut the meat into strips so that he could slide them onto a stick and brown them before putting them into the pot to stew. As Harry prepared his late lunch he remembered Hedwig and took the mice that he had gotten for her which she graciously accepted and thanked him for not ruining her meal as he was his.

Harry laid back on the ground thoroughly stuffed from his lunch and as he expected there was indeed enough for his dinner and maybe breakfast too. He had his knees drawn up and Hedwig flew down to sit on them and then she hopped to his chest where he stroked her feathers as he began to doze off tired from having to work so hard for his meal that day.

Chapter 10 Completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeSun 22 Feb 2009, 11:16 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 11

Minerva's Pensieve

“What exactly are you saying Horace?” Professor McGonagal demanded.

“The boy Minerva, I do not know why he did it, but Potter stared into his eyes when he bound and petrified the Dark Lord, and then he saw something in the eyes. There, right there in the Dark Lord’s own eyes.” Professor Slughorn was now pointing two large and fat fingers at his own eyes in emphasis.

“But what does that mean Horace?” McGonagal asked. Horace Slughorn was mopping his brow as he sat down and indicated to Minerva that she do the same.

Minerva took a seat in a chair near Slughorn and asked, “Is there something else Horace. Something, that worries you so?”

He took a long breath before replying, looking about the office as he thought out his words carefully. “Minerva, the boy said that it was not over.”

“Yes, yes you have told me that once already today!” McGonagal’s voice was sharp and cutting as she continued, “And what else did Potter say?” What was it man?”

Slughorn looked positively panic stricken as he replayed the scene over in his head again as if hoping that he had not seen what he had. The look in Potter’s face when he suddenly looked about the chamber as if expecting to see some one else emerge and then the sudden expulsion of all that was friendly and could help. Voldemort was only a minion which meant that the war was not over. If Voldemort was a pawn, then this was not a game to be played by anyone.

“Come now, what else did the Potter boy say that has you so obviously worried Horace?” McGonagal’s voice had calmed as she prodded once more. She herself had thought about what she had seen, and so wanted it to be untrue. Hoping desperately al the while chiding herself for not having seen it before…, long before now.

Horace took another deep breath and answered her question as calmly as he could. “He said… the boy said…the Dark Lord was…only a …minion.”

“A what?” Minerva gasped.

“A minion Minerva, a minion.” Horace had blurted the last out.

“But we’ve had no more incidents since the Potter boy defeated him.” She stated. “Are you quite sure of what you witnessed Horace?” But Minerva knew that he had just seconded what she had though she had seen herself just recently.

Slughorn did not answer, he didn’t want to. “Minerva, its been three years and not one word, not one incident. The Death Eaters have all been captured or have completely disappeared. Dumbledore himself has even gone back to sleep Minerva. We all saw, we all witnessed those Dementors as they applied the Kiss. We were all there when Potter summoned them and us, to bear witness that The Dark Lord was finished. We witnessed it with our own eyes.” Slughorn was trying very hard to convince himself that he was wrong in what he had seen with his very own eyes and just moments ago.

The Deputy Headmaster rose from his chair and began to pace the office. His hands clasped tightly behind his back he drifted deep into thought. He had known Tom Riddle as a boy and as the Dark Lord. Riddle was a leader among men and it did not sit well that he would be a follower of someone else’s design.

“How could I have missed this?” he had spoken the words aloud but Minerva paid no heed to them as he continued his pace.

Slughorn was meticulous at seeing the potential of his students and had for years aligned himself only with those that would achieve great standing and power or influence. The only other Dark Lord greater than Voldemort was Grimwald and Dumbledore had defeated him during Voldemort’s last years at Hogwarts, and Grimwald was not the heir of Salazar Slytherin and he could not open the Chamber of Secrets, but then Harry Potter was not the heir either and he could open the door. Horace had submerged himself deeper in thought.

Minerva too had risen from her seat and returned to her desk observing Slughorn as he paced about in her office. Taking her seat, she sat down behind her desk and buried her face into her hands. She needed help as she was unsure if she needed to raise the alarm. It had been three peaceful years and the only unexplained disappearance was that of Harry Potter’s, but who could blame the boy for wanting to leave? She asked only herself. Potter had lost everything he cared about to the Dark Lord and there was nothing left for him here except for Ronald and Hermione Weasley. Without knowing she had swiveled about in her chair to face the portrait of Albus Dumbledore. He had been a source of strength to her for many years and she was very fond of him.

“Albus,” she said softly as if to herself. “Albus, help is needed.”

“I was wondering when you were going to ask.” A bemused voice had said. Minerva jerked her head up to peer at the portrait and Slughorn stopped and turned as well. “What help is needed Minerva?”

Fred and George Weasley came bounding down the stairs of the Burrow shouting “Remus is back! Remus is back!”

Bill and Ron both jumped to their feet and joined the rest of the Weasley family as they all assembled in the kitchen just as Molly hurriedly opened the back door to let both Remus Lupin and Tonks in.

“Remus!” Bill bellowed as he clasped the man’s hand and welcomed him inside the house while Molly and the ladies took in Tonks. Molly had separated herself long enough from the women to give Remus a hug and a kiss on his cheek in welcome. When the welcomes had finished the men left for the front room while the ladies began chatting excitedly in the kitchen while finishing up for the dinner to come. Moments later a soft knock at the kitchen door brought Molly Weasley about as she was the only one to have heard the knock.

Molly left the girls to their chat and opened the kitchen door and took a sharp breath.


Molly let out a loud sob and gasped in exclamation as she pulled in her now second oldest son to a tight embrace and held him as tightly as she possibly could afraid that it was either a dream or if it were real, he would leave again. Percy clung to his mother as if he were once again a small and frightened child.

Molly gathered herself and pulled away but still held onto Percy when he asked “Mother…, Mum, can I come home?”

Molly let out a sob that had caused everyone to come to the door to see what was happening but Hermione and Fleur both beckoned them to stay inside for just the moment.

“If you hurt my Gandma Molly, I’ll hex you!” A fiery little red headed girl of two years old was standing in the center of the doorway with a clenched fist on her hip and a tiny wand in her hand pointed directly at Percy.

Mrs. Weasley still holding her son tightly, turned and said, “Molly dear, this is your Uncle Percy. He’s your daddy’s big brother.”

Missy Molly stood her ground and said defiantly, “Uh-uh, Uncle Bill and Uncle Fred and Uncle George are my daddy’s big brothers, and he…,” and she pointed with her wand ever more severely, “made you cry. My daddy and my Uncles would never make you cry. Only a bad man makes you cry because I heard you say that.”

Ron and Hermione both rushed to their daughter, and Hermione reached for Molly and turned her to face them both. Kneeling so that she was face to face with little Molly. Hermione said as soothingly as she could, “Molly dearest, you have never met your Uncle Percy before and you know Mommy and Daddy would never lie to you don’t you?"

Molly shook her head but she still kept looking at Percy from the corner of her eye. Uncle Percy is your Daddy’s big brother and you wouldn’t want to hurt Daddy’s big brothers now would you?”

Again Molly shook her head no. “But he made Gandma Molly cry.” She said plaintively still not taking her eye from Percy.

“That’s because Uncle Percy has been away for a very long time and Grandma Molly is so very happy to see him again.” It was Ron who had now spoken as he knelt to face Molly.

As Ron and Hermione were trying to explain to Molly why her grandmother was crying and who Percy was, the rest of the family now joined in around them. Someone had taken the wand from Molly’s little hand as

Hermione continued on to say, “Now my little one, you give mommy your wan…, Molly Ann Weasley!, Just where did you get a wand!!” Hermione had just realized that her daughter had a real wand in her hand. Molly instantly pulled her hand behind her back. “Molly give me that wand this instant.” Hermione was now standing and her hand was outstretched and waiting.

Percy had separated from his mother and crossed the narrow space between him and Molly when he noticed an exchange between Molly and someone he did not see.

“It’s alright Hermione.” He tried to coax.

“It most certainly is not alright!” Hermione exclaimed still standing with her hand out. Using her most demanding voice now Hermione said, “Molly you give mommy that wand this instant or Mommy will jinx it from you!”

Percy tried once again by saying “Hermione it’s alright. It wasn’t a wand, it was only a pencil in her hand I saw it.”

Hermione ignored him and took her own wand out and very sternly began, “Molly…one…two…,”

Molly looked more defiant than ever and her eye's narrowed but she did as she was told and brought her hand around in front of her before Hermione could say three.

“You see Hermione, it was only a pencil.” Percy had said, as he extracted a pencil from Molly’s hand and handed it over to Hermione.

Percy knelt down so that he too was at eye level with Molly and extended his hand towards her. “Hello Molly Weasley. My name is Percy Weasley. We have not been introduced before, but I assure you that I am your Uncle and I am most happy to make your acquaintance.”

Molly looked about her towards the adults, uncertain as what to do when Ron placed a hand on her shoulder for reassurance and nodded that it was okay to take Percy’s hand. Molly took Percy’s hand and Percy shook it.

“Molly, do you have something to say to your Uncle Percy?” Hermione intoned, still looking very unsatisfied about the pencil in her hand.

Molly looked questioningly at her mother so Hermione added, “It wasn’t very nice of you for what you just did now was it?”

Molly blinked her eyes for a moment and thought. “I’m sorry Uncle Percy.”

Percy, still kneeling in front of her smiled at her and said “It was very brave of you to want to protect your grandmother from a stranger, so I think I’ll accept your apology.”

“Well dinner is just about ready.” Mrs. Weasley said to break the ice and as Percy stood up each of his brothers took it in turns to embrace and welcome Percy back into the Burrow while the elder Molly beamed at her sons. While everyone was filing into the kitchen Hermione was watching intently for any sign of the wand that she knew Molly had definitely had in her hand.

Albus listened patiently as McGonagal told of her concern and after so many years of viewing the memory, she had just now noticed that Harry was saying something near the end of his most unbelievable fight and his unusual behavior near the end of the memory. Because of this, she explained why she had finally asked Horace for his help and opinion. Horace, unable to be quiet any longer began to tell of what he had witnessed while in the pensieve and how he had positioned himself so that he could read Harry’s face and lips and he expanded on Harry’s most extraordinary power to not only expel the members of the Order of the Phoenix from the Chamber but to expel him forcefully from the pensieve as well. And where had he learned such a command was just as intriguing in the tale.

Dumbledore had remained silent and pensive throughout the telling as he took in both accounts of the memory that had barely differed in their detail. When they had finished speaking Dumbledore’s portrait remained silent for a long while before it spoke again.

“Horace are you without doubt, quite sure of what you had seen?” The question was not challenging but speculative in its nature.

“I am quite sure Albus, yes; quite sure, but without doubt…, I cannot say.”

“And, you say that Harry had said, that Tom was but a minion?”

“Yes, but Albus I did not hear him speak those words. I only saw his lips move to those words. I could have been mistaken.” There was a near plea in Slughorn’s voice as he said that last statement.

“Albus,” Minerva now spoke up. “You said yourself that all would be over once..,” Minerva still found it difficult to say the name, “Voldemort would be defeated.”

“And there has been no word from Harry since?” Dumbledore had ignored McGonagal.

“No Albus, not one word. He came back to finish his classes and spoke to no one and then, vanished.” Minerva looked very worried as she continued to look at the Portrait.

Chapter 11 Completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeSun 22 Feb 2009, 11:29 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 12

Decisions Made

The evening meal at the Weasley’s was a joyous one to say the least. Percy had come home and Mrs. Weasley had placed Percy right next to her at the table. All throughout the evening’s meal Molly kept finding reasons to touch her son and she kept glancing at her fantastic clock as if for reassurance noting that all the hands except for Harry’s, now pointed to “At Home,” but Harry’s still pointed to “Traveling.” Little Molly who usually sat nest to her Grandmother had moved her high chair so that she could set between her mother and father as she, stealing glances at Percy was still unsure of him. Though, she was very quickly, too occupied to remember her mistrust of Percy.

Mrs. Weasley could not help but to smile and beam about the table as they all engage in excited talk listening to how the twins business had now grown to three stores in England and several outlets in various parts of Europe as well as talks of expanding into the Americas. Hermione was explaining to Remus and Tonks what a junior year of University meant and what a Degree in Law was all about and Ron was bringing the newcomers up to speed about his taking his final examinations to become an Auror in the upcoming week. This was the type of dinner that had not been held at the Burrow in quite a long time and Molly found herself wishing that it would never end.

Tonks had caught little Molly’s eye during the meal by changing her hair or her nose whenever Molly would look her way and then change it to something else when Molly would turn away from her. At one point near the end of the meal a quiet conversation between Mrs. Weasley and Percy was interrupted when the rest of the table had erupted in a cacophony of squeals and laughter as Tonk's head had taken on the shape of a very orange bear with pink antlers rising from its top and it’s snout ending in an elongated pigs snout while the lips were formed into a very long beak. To add to little Molly’s delight and much to Fred’s chagrin, Fred was laughing so hard that he had fallen completely out of his chair and had Molly not been sitting in her high chair she too would have landed on the floor squarely on her bottom.

Fleur had taken that moment to rise from the table to bring in a special “Welcome Home” cake for Percy that she and Hermione had managed to keep hidden from Mrs. Weasley. Grandma Molly shot an accusing look at the rest of the table though her smile had not left her face, but each of the now grown men in her family as well as Tonks and Remus all shrugged and looked in Fleur and Hermione’s direction whom both had the most innocent of looks and not a hint of conspiracy about them. Molly immediately left her seat and gathered them into a hug having no words that could express her feelings for them she could only hug them tighter.

“Ahem..,” Percy had coughed politely. “Mum, if you let go of them they might perhaps be able to breathe again.”

Mrs. Weasley had not realized that she was now crushing the two young women, “Oh my,” She had said but Fleur and Hermione just kept smiling at her.

Dinner was finally over and while the Weasley men and Remus retired to the family room the ladies and little Molly remained in the kitchen to clean up the remaining food and the dishes. After the worst had been cleared away, Hermione excused herself to take little Molly upstairs to bed which was in Ginny’s old bedroom and was now Molly’s when she would stay over. When she was returning back down the stairs she had noticed that the family room had gone very quiet as Remus who was holding a piece of parchment, had a very grim look about his face as he was reading it. Hermione stopped on the stairs to see what was happening.

The silence in the room was broken when Mrs. Weasley, who was drying her hands on her apron took one look at Remus and then said very firmly, “Fleur, Tonks, warm up some tea and bring it in. Hermione be a dear and come on down. Bill, send off a message to the heads to meet at Headquarters. Ron, get a message to Dobby to expect visitors and have Dobby pack some things for Hermione and the baby, have them sent here. Hermione you and Molly will be staying here with me.”

Everyone was now looking at her in astonishment including Remus. Hermione realizing what was happening rushed to her mother-in-law as did Fleur while the others looked from Mrs. Weasley to Remus and then back to Molly again.

“Mum, what is it?” Ron had managed to ask the question that was on everyone’s mind.

“The Order of the Phoenix has been called back to action. Has it not Remus?” She said rather than asking as she turned fully to face Remus who was still holding the piece of parchment in stunned amazement.

When Remus had said nothing in response to Molly, Ron stood up and said, “Right then…,”

But Percy had now stood up and placed a hand on his little brothers shoulder to push him back down into his chair and said "Ron, you’ve a young family to take care of and final exams to be taking. Take care of those first.” And he looked around to the others in the room and continued. “I am not a member of this Order of the Phoenix but I can and am willing to help.” As he looked at each person separately to assess their opinion of what he had just said, Bill was watching his mother. He had to admire her strength as she stood there stoically and poised as she was ready to fight again even after giving losing so much already.

Remus finally stood and looked to Molly and said quietly “Molly, you have already lost too much in this. Your guess is correct and the Order is being called together. But let me find out who and why first before we do anything more and you," and he gestured to everyone in the room, "will stay here. There are others that can take charge of headquarters and organize things.” As Remus was talking Bill had taken the note from his hand and began to read it.

“Remus, I hope this note has found you quickly and that it also finds you well and with peace. We have discovered that our struggles may not be entirely over although the Dark Lord is no more. I have awakened the portrait of Dumbledore and have asked for his assistance while the rest remain asleep. Dumbledore wishes to speak with you as early as can be. Please do make haste.”

Yours in sincerity,

Minerva McGoanagal

“Bill,” Molly had begun, “If there is one thing that I have learned from Albus Dumbledore, that is to be prepared. Now you boy’s do as I have said.”

“And what are we supposed to do?” Fred and George both spoke in unison.

“Nothing yet.” It was Remus who now spoke. “Bill, alert only Kingsley Shacklebolt for now. And Ron, Hermione…,” addressing them both together, “May we have use of your home temporarily if need be?”

Ron was already standing next to Hermione with his arm around her shoulders, holding her near to him. “Yes, yes of course you can.”

“Ron, I don’t want Molly involved in this.” Hermione was looking up to him. She wasn’t complaining but she was very worried.

Remus was now looking back to Molly as she moved to Ron and Hermione placing what seemed to be a protective arm around the both of them and then to Fleur as she too went to embrace them.

“I would love to spend time with my little niece and I think that Gabrielle would like to come and visit too.” Said Fleur.

“Oh that would be wonderful dears.” Molly consoled.

“So then,“ and Remus continued to speak as he glanced about the room. “Bill you will contact Kingsley and then all of you meet me at head…,” he stopped to correct himself. “At Ron and Hermione’s home in shall we say two hours?” He looked to each one separately as if to get their individual consent. “Fred and George I think we may need use of your contacts abroad if that is agreeable with you when I find out more of what is happening.” Both of the twins readily agreed.

Remus was taking the cloak that Bill had offered him to use when Tonks hurried over to him and said, “I’ll go with you.”

Remus turned and grasped her by the shoulders firmly to stop her from going any further and slowly shook his head no and then softly he spoke to her but not soft enough that others could not hear. He took her hands into his ,and said, “No Nymphadora Tonks, you will not. I cannot let you.”

She opened her mouth to reply but he placed a finger to her lips and continued speaking softly to her.

“I need you to stay here for the moment.”

“But why?” she pleaded with him.

The others in the room suddenly found themselves noticing the pictures that hung on the walls or the laces of their shoes as Remus continued to speak to her.

Falteringly he continued, “Because Nymph…, Tonks, if you come with me then…, there will be no one to help Molly…,” it was as if he were struggling to say what he had wanted to say and Tonks began to fear what he might say next. “Tonks…,” He began again even more gently than ever before, “If I were to…how…my dear sweet…” Tears began to fill Tonks eyes as she knew in her heart of hearts that he was trying to say goodbye to her once and for all. “Who would be here to help Molly… plan… our wedding?”

Every head in the room had now jerked their attention to Remus and Tonks who had now had her face buried in his chest sobbing. The Burrow was now silent. No one uttered a sound as they all looked in Remus’s direction. Molly was the first to recover as her mouth had opened, working vainly to say something but not a word came out so she placed and a hand over her face to cover her look of disbelieving surprise. Tonks had been taken completely off guard as she had steeled herself for the worse and resigned herself for a heart wrenching goodbye. Hermione and Fleur both stood rooted in place as they were rendered speechless at what they had just heard, mouths agape just as Molly's was. The rest of the room just stared at the two as the shock of what they had just heard and the silence of the moment grew deafening.

“Well glad we got that all cleared up.” said Fred.

“Yes Bro, the tension was thick don’t you think?” said George.

“Could have cut it with a knife.” said Fred.

“Barking mad they are.” said George.

"Yes, quite barking.” said Fred.

“Shall we toss a drink?" asked Geroge.

“Yes, I think we shall.” said Fred.

“Do you think they might say something if we were to offer?" asked George.

“Don’t know Bro?” replied Fred.

"Should we try you think?” asked George.

The rest of the occupants in the room had turned to face the twins, their mouths still agape. Fred reached into his pocket and took out a galleon and handed it to his brother George. “You were right there George, there would be a time here at the Burrow when all would be quiet.”

As George took the winnings from an age old bet and placed it into his pocket, the room erupted into a roar of sound as everyone began to speak all at once. Remus took this moment to silently kiss his future wife to be and slip out the door leaving her still dumbstruck over what he had just said in front of others at that.

Ron managed to pull Hermione off to the side as the women began to converge on Tonks who still stood stunned by the proposal, rushed to congratulate her.

“Hermione, I’m going to Hogwarts to see what this is all about. See to it that Dobby gets the message for me and ask him to prepare extra rooms just in case.”

Hermione began to speak but Ron hushed her and added, “I don’t want Molly to leave the Burrow, besides it’ll give Mum something to do. So ask Dobby to bring Molly’s thing before the meeting starts.”

Hermione spoke up unwilling to be hushed, “I only wanted to tell you to be careful and that I love you, you dolt.”

Ron kissed her warmly and said, “I’ll see you later at the house.” Ron left out the back door and vanished.

Chapter 12 Continued

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeSun 22 Feb 2009, 11:30 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 12 continued

Decisions Made

Percy felt out of place at the Burrow and was quietly leaving the room. He had no idea that his family were leaders of the famed and yet unknown Order of the Phoenix. He had always thought of his parents as soldiers or fo rather than leaders and thought worse of himself for begrudging them those many years ago by saying that his father had not aspired to anything. He felt truly left out when he offered to assist and felt that no one took notice of his attempt. Maybe it was because they did not trust him anymore but he wasn’t sure of that either. One thing that he was sure of, and that was that he no longer belonged here. He had dug his own grave and now he must lay in it. He was already up the stairs and no one had noticed his ever leaving the room down below when he passed Ginny’s old room.

Percy stopped at the door and then opened it silently and let himself in. The chair that he used to sit in at night watching little Ginny sleep was still where it had always been and he took a seat in it. Watching Molly while she slept his mind began to wonder and he thought to himself about how beautiful his little niece was and how serene and peaceful she looked and then he lowered his head into his hands and wept. He was walking away from the greatest gift that had ever been given to him and he felt repulsed with himself. How long he had wept he didn’t know but he had no more tears left to cry with. He just felt numb with loss and he had only himself to blame for it.

“She’s beautiful isn’t she?”

A voice came from the darkness behind him and a hand placed firmly on his shoulders prevented him from turning or rising up.

“Looks just like Ginny. Even sleeps like her too. But you would know that. You used to come in here and sit with Ginny late at night when she was that age.” The voice continued. “Has the same temper too. And is she ever smart. Don’t let her fool you. That little Molly is a very clever one.” The hand on his shoulder remained firm as the voice continued talking in it’s quiet tones. “You know Perc; if you leave tonight your dumber than I had ever thought you to be.”

Percy couldn’t tell who the voice belonged to as it was masked in the hushed tones that he was using. Percy tried to rise but again the hand held him firmly down in the chair.

“She has a right to know her Uncle you know.” The voice paused for a moment as if to let that thought sink into Percy’s head. “Just look at her. She is a gift man, A fresh beginning for this house, for you, she is something that makes all of us proud of who we are…, and if I understood your sobs…, She makes us regret what we’ve done too. Think about that for a bit before you make any decision will you?”

George took his hand from Percy’s shoulder and handed him the drink that was meant to celebrate Remus and Tonks' engagement but now it had another purpose.

“How long have you been standing there?” Percy asked softly.

“Long enough big Bro’. George had answered. George took a last swig from his drink and patted Percy on his shoulder and said, “You stay in here as long as you need to, to heal your heart. Just looking at her warms you enough, but Percy, just so that you know this, you are not leaving here tonight. Your home now." And with a squeeze on Percy’s shoulder, George walked to the nightstand and placed Molly’s wand back into the drawer.

“Where’s Percy?” Molly asked as she looked around the room.

“Doing what he used to do at night Mum.” George had said as he came back down from upstairs.

Mrs. Weasley smiled warmly as she turned to Hermione and said “He used to sit for hours at night and watch Ginny sleeping when they were younger. Wanted to make sure that no ghosts would get her. They were really close you know. My, it is comforting to know that he has not really changed."

Hermione smiled at the thought but gave a long curious look towards George who was now in deep discussion with Fred and Bill

Chapter 12 Completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeSun 22 Feb 2009, 11:35 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 13

A Job For Winky

Dobby had just received Hermione’s message from her Patronus and set about packing Molly’s things. He was very worried about why he had been sent the message in the secret way. Being sent a message in the secret way meant bad things and having his Missy Molly being sent away meant really bad things. Things that he had seen before with an older Master that he did not care to remember anymore. Dobby fretted as to what could be bad as he collected the things that he knew Missy Molly would want and they clothes that she would need and he was heartened by the fact that she would be staying at the second most and best place, at Grandma Wheezy’s. He had become very fond of that family and if anyone doted on Missy Molly more than he it would be them.

As He placed her things in a trunk an idea came to him that would ensure her safety and this time he did not have to worry about getting permission because his master, Mr. Harry Potter had given him permission to do whatever he needed to keep His Wheezy’s safe and happy. As he was about to send off the trunk, he stopped and frowned over one aspect of his plan something that he knew Mr. Harry Potter would not like and quite possibly have to punish himself for doing so, or perhaps he should wait until his Master returned and then tell him about it. He smiled at that thought as he knew Mr. Harry Potter would not allow any such punishment to happen, so he snapped his fingers and sent the trunk full of Missy Molly’s clothes and toys off to the Burrow and then he set about to prepare all the extra rooms in the house which for Dobby really only took just a few very short minutes to accomplish.

The House Elves at Hogwarts were bustling about the kitchens cleaning the pots, the pans, and the dishes from the evening’s meals when Dobby arrived. At once Rogent, the head Elf for the kitchens was standing in front of Dobby. Dobby was dressed in his Butler’s uniform.

“Dobby does not work here anymore.” Rogent had said barring Dobby’s way. “Dobby is not supposed to be here.”

By this time several more House Elves had gathered around the two of them but Dobby was not worried about it He had a plan and he knew that Rogent was a good House Elf and would not allow any of his workers to perform violence in his presence.

“Dobby is not wanted here. Dobby is a bad House Elf who is wanting paying,” remarked an Elf named Fiedle, who had pushed himself forward to the front to face Dobby.

Actually to a normal House Elf Dobby was not considered to be a good House Elf at all.

“Dobby does not even wear a proper uniform of a good House Elf,” Fiedle continued to say. And then thrusting the portion of his Tea towel that contained the Hogwarts crest into Dobby’s face he insulted Dobby by saying, “This is the proper uniform of a good House elf.”

“Do not insult my Master!” Dobby was saying at the same time he brought his hand forward and sent Fiedle flying backwards across the kitchen and into a wall that had held pots and pans until they came crashing down upon Fielde’s head.

Dobby was completely enraged by the insult given to his master as his uniform was given to him by Harry. He was prepared to accept any insult to him but not to his Master, no one insulted Harry Potter in his presence.

Then Dobby turned to face every House Elf in the kitchen and said quite fiercely “This is the proper uniform of a proper House Elf in the home of Master Harry Potter!” Dobby stared imperiously at the assembled group and there was a certain measure of reverence in his voice when he said “If you insult Dobby’s uniform, then you is insulting Dobby’s Master.” And as if to make his point very clear to the others he sent Fiedle flying once again into another wall. “Dobby is a proper House Elf again.” And his look offered challenge to any that dared to contradict him, but instead there was much nodding of heads and smiles had returned to the faces of all the Elves including Rogent’s who was fair but held his opinions.

Several of the elves broke away at a run to collect Fiedle and to bring him forth. As the others still nodding in approval also murmured their assents of what Dobby had done, of how a good House should behave when it’s master had been insulted. Fiedle had been brought to face Dobby and immediately prostrated himself in front of Dobby’s feet.

Squeaking he said “Fiedle is begging for Dobby’s forgiveness. Fiedle is not knowing that Dobby is now a proper House Elf with a proper Master such as Mr. Harry Potter. Fiedle is not knowing any of this.”

As Dobby looked about him he saw and heard the murmurs of agreement and the nodding of the many heads but Rogent had not done so yet.

“Dobby is not aggrieved for himself. If Dobby’s Master were here Fiedle would beg for Mr. Harry Potter’s forgiveness for it is he that Fiedle most egregiously insulted. But Fiedle cannot as Mr. Harry Potter is not here. What can Fiedle do?”

At that Rogent finally smiled and nodded his approval.

Dobby taking the hint said, “As Mr. Harry Potter is most kind and most generous and Dobby knows his Master Dobby will accept and offer Fiedle’s apologies for him.”

Rogent turned to Dobby and said quite bluntly “Has Dobby come to take Winky for Mr. Harry Potter?”

“Dobby has, but Winky is not for Mr. Harry Potter. Winky is for the Babe of Mr. Harry Potter’s Wheezy’s.”

Rogent frowned at this as he said “Winky is now having twelve bottles a day Dobby and she has not worked since you have left. Winky is not a good House Elf Dobby, and Winky should not be near a babe.”

Rogent was being most fatherly with this advice but Dobby countered “A babe is what Winky most needs to cure her.”

Rogent thought this through and replied “If Dobby takes her, Winky can never come back.”

Dobby understood this all too well. It was only because of Albus Dumbledore that Winky still remained at Hogwarts. Dobby nodded his understanding and as soon as he done so several hands grabbed his arms and led him off to a darkened store room that smell of a foul odor. One of the Elves pointed to a dirty and grimy mound in a back corner and then they all left.

Huddled in the corner laid Winky and as Dobby drew nearer, he could see the empty bottles of butter beer littering the floor and the grimy mound was both Winky and her clothes. Dobby felt a shudder of pity run through him as he looked upon her laying there in a stupor. Disgusted by what he saw and by how the other Elves had allowed her to become that wa,y he left the storeroom to seek out Rogent. Finding him was easy enough has Rogent’s usual position was in the center of things directing the work. Marching up to him Dobby simply asked for help in moving Winky to the hospital wing where he knew that Madam Pomfrey would nurse Winky back into at least enough sense and ability to come back to #12 Grimwauld place where she could finish her recovery and he could let her know that she now had a very young Mistress that needed not only her care but her protection as well. Rogent was only to willing to assist and assigned six elves to take her straight away and at the same time reminding Dobby that she could no longer come back.

Dobby under normal circumstances would have apparated his way to the infirmary but he had realized that he had forgotten just one minor detail in his plan and that was how to get his Wheezy’s to accept Winky. He knew that Mrs. Hermione would never allow Winky to work as a proper house Elf and would insist on wages and all else and Winky would only fall deeper at that insult. Mr. Ron would be the person to speak too but he had already told big lies to Rogent and to Fiedle and he assaulted Fiedle to make his lies even better.

“Dobby is indeed going to have to punish himself for telling lies.” He moaned aloud but to himself as he walked down the long hallway the led to the stairs that opened at the main hall. Then an Idea struck him but he would need help to make it happen. He had all this money that he had saved in his very own account in Gringott’s bank. He could hire Winky and she would work for him and he would assign her to Missy Molly but he would not tell Winky that the galleons that he was giving was paying, he would say that it was for to spend on Missy Molly and to spend on things and stuff for the house.

“Ohh…,” he moaned even louder. This would mean more lies.

Dobby was near frantic with himself by now He never knew how hard it was to tell lies and how many lies one had to tell just to make one lie work. He needed help and he knew just who to help him. Missy Molly’s Wheezy’s would help him, Fred and George would know how to do this. Satisfied he snapped his fingers and with a pop he vanished on his way to the Hospital wing. Madam Pomfrey was just pouring a pepper up potion in Elf strength down Winky’s throat when Dobby arrived.

Turning to Dobby she very plaintively said “I do hope that she has a good home to go to, being forced to work for pay just doesn’t do for a House Elf.”

Leaving Dobby to look over Winky for a short moment Madam Pomfrey could still be heard tut tutting as she walked swiftly back to her office for another potion to allow Winky to sleep off her drunkenness without counteracting the pepper up potion.

She returned quickly and as she saw Dobby’s worried look her mood softened and she told Dobby that Winky would have to stay for several days. Dobby brightened at this because it would give him time to talk to Mr.’s Fred and George. Misinterpreting Dobby change of expressions to mean that he was relieved that Winky would get better she smiled at him and shooed him off saying that Winky needed rest and quiet and that there was nothing Dobby could do to give her either of those. Dobby only now had to go himself to the Burrow to check on his Missy Molly and to see if Mrs. Wheezy would be needing anything else this evening but his real purpose was to enlist the help of Fred and George.

Ron entered the Castle and took the stairs that he knew would lead Professor McGonagal’s office. He was only minutes behind Remus and he had hoped that by using one of the secret passageways he could catch up to him before he reached the office as Ron had just realized that he did not know the password to open the door. Ducking through the tapestry the hid the passageway Ron was able to take another set of stairs that led almost directly to where the stone gargoyle stood guard over the entrance to McGonagal’s office, Just up ahead he heard footsteps and so he hastened his pace.

“Remus.” He called out and the sound of the footsteps stopped.

Catching up to Remus, Ron was slightly out of breath as the passageway was now somehow longer than he had remembered it to be..

“Ron, what are you doing here?’ Remus had asked slightly surprised.

“I know that this somehow concerns Harry and I want to be here Remus.” Ron explained.

“I know that Ron, but I do not even know what this meeting is all about myself.”

"I know that too, but still, I need to be here.” Was all that Ron could think to say.

Remus shrugged and turned to the gargoyle and said "Raspberries and Oranges,” and the gargoyles leapt to the side as the doorway with its spiraling staircase began to open.

“Mr. Weasley, what are you doing here? You were not summoned.”

Ron was used to her tartan moods but it was Remus who spoke for him. “I asked him to come along Minerva because he needs to know what I have to say while I am here. So if you would be so kind to let me in on the current events so that I may confide in you what it is that I have discovered.”

“Very well then have a seat.” And McGonagal conjured up an additional chair for Ron. “Albus we are all here now.” Minerva had spoken.

“Remus, if you would please kindly fill me in on what has happened since my rather untimely departure,” and he smiled down to the rest of the room.

“Well, after your death, and I am sure that Minerva has told you about the schools closure…,”

“Yes, Yes she did fill me in on all of that but what do you know of the assignment that was given to Harry?”

At that question Ron sat straight up as it was only he and Hermione that knew about the Horcruxes and he wondered if anyone had known what they were doing all those nights during their seventh year. Lupin began to tell his story then. He began with the letter being sent to him almost immediately after Harry had arrived back at Privet Drive and to everyone’s astonishment he told of Harry’s entire conversation holding nothing back including how Harry had felt about certain events in his life that was supposed to have some purpose and some meaning but he had no one to help him figure things out because everyone that he should have been able to turn to had been taken from him.

Ron had noticed that several times Minerva’s handkerchief had gone to her eyes and couldn’t help but to think that she was an old softy after all. Ron felt abashed at all the times that he had thought that she was just being mean to Harry like the time she refused to let him take that first Hogsmeade trip when she could have signed the permission slip as a Head of House. Remus continued telling about how Harry felt each year at Hogwarts and how he had felt it to be his home than anywhere else and when Remus arrived to the part of Ginny Minerva left the office on the pretext of getting tea for everyone there and Ron found reason to study the lines that formed the stone floor. Then Remus told Dumbledore that Harry had told him that he was lost and did not know what to do and that he needed help.

Ron sat back up and said to himself “So that’s where Harry was getting these ideas over what to look for.”

Remus then said “So I picked up where you left off in his training. I viewed those memories that you had stored in the pensieve and helped Harry to figure out what items to look for and how to find them and when Harry could not go himself I went and I sought out other areas on my own but it was Harry that destroyed each of the Horcrux though I attempted to help him., he insisted that it was his duty and that each one represented a person that was taken from him and that he alone had to collect on those payments.”

“And he was quite right in thinking that.” Dumbledore replied. “Quite right to think of it that way. Did you not see the significance six Horcrux and six deaths all relating to the one who lived? That is where Tom failed himself. He took from Harry six times the same number of his Horcrux. But please continue Remus as it is almost time for you to do what I have asked you her for."

“We had found all but the last of the Horcrux when I discovered the home of Severus Snape. I had followed Malfoy’s wife Narcissa to the home where she was let in by a person and she remained there almost the entire night. I hid in the shadows near enough to listen through a cracked window and over heard her talking to Wormtail.”

Ron had clenched his fists at the sound of that name remembering all those years he had taken care of the wretched rat.

Chapter 13 Continued

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeSun 22 Feb 2009, 11:36 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 13 continued

A Job For Winky

Minerva had returned from the kitchens looking much refreshed and more controlled than before. As she passed about the tea Remus continued to explain what he had found out. Snape and Draco had not returned but had just vanished from sight. They did not return to Voldemort’s hide out but merely vanished and Narcissa was worried for her son. Wormtail assured her that the Dark Lord was pleased with what he had heard about Dumbledore’s death but that he would try to find the whereabouts of both Snape and of Draco.

“When she left I entered the house and took what information I could before I killed him.” Remus had exacted his pledge to avenge James and…, and of Lily.

“What information where you able to retrieve from Peter, Remus?” Dumbledore seemed to have a knowing look in his eye as to why Remus faltered in his last statements.

“All I could get was the Yo-Yo from him and that was all he would say.”

“Ahh, I should have known from the first. It was his first accomplishment when he learned that he could do things that others could not.”

They were all looking at Albus now completely confused by what he had said. “Did you see in my memory Remus…, the one where I first met Tom?’

Remus thought for a moment and then shook his head no.

“Ron did Harry discuss it with you at any time?”

Ron looked bewildered for only a moment and then shook his head but added that Harry did mention the memory but he had given no details other than to describe how Voldemort behaved. Albus began to chuckle to himself and they all looked together.

“Albus what is so funny at this time?” Minerva wanted to know.

“Harry could have only figured that out from that very beginning. When I made Tom return those items that he had stolen from the children in the Orphange. I did not know then that the muggle toy was his very first conquest. He had gone back to the Orphanage and reclaimed it as I had told him that I would know if he had not returned it, but how would I know that he had not stolen it again?”

“He only took what he coveted…, what he could steal…, what he could take that had meaning to him. But why the cup then, Professor Dumbledore?” It was Ron that asked the question.

“The cup…, But of course Mr. Weasley you would not know the circumstances of how Tom attained that now would you?”

Ron shook his head no to Dumbledore’s question so he began to explain.

“Helga Hufflepuff handed down a cup, a simple cup to her family until it finally arrived to Hepzibah Smith, whom had not shown the cup to any one else other than Tom himself which again, was another first as he was the only person to have been able to beguile her enough to show it. Do you see now how his trophies measured something that he alone had learned how to do?’

Remus nodded as he now understood what Harry had been able to figure out. Dumbledore looked to Ron and asked “Was it you and Miss Granger…,”

“Mrs. Weasley now.” Ron interrupted proudly, “And we have a very precocious two year old daughter too.” Ron was grinning to himself as he was proud to mention his family to anyone that would listen.

“Ahh, yes I should have known that.” Dumbledore had a twinkle in his eye as he corrected himself, “Mrs. Weasley helped to destroy each of the Horcrux?”

“Well it was Hermione mostly. She had figured out a spell that would neutralize its protective curses and my older brother Bill was of help as well. Hermione knew what questions to ask and he never asked why but explained how to identify sealing and protection curses.” Ron explained.

Then Dumbledore asked if anyone witnessed the destruction of the Yo-yo. When no one answered then he said “Remus I think it's time for you to enter Minerva’s most excellent memory now, and tell us what you have observed."

Remus stood and leaned his head into the pensieve that now sat on the desk, and was there for several long minutes. Then he was thrust back so violently that he tumbled over the chair that was sitting behind him.

“Merlin’s Beard!” he exclaimed. “Where did he learn such a powerful spell? My lord…,” he swallowed very hard and then he continued, “I did not teach him any of this.” Remus was more amazed by Harry’s strength than he was by what he had just witnessed, though his heart was wrenched from him when He saw Ginny Weasley so callously murdered.

Ron went to the pensieve to have a look for himself but Remus restrained him saying “Ron please, don’t look. There is nothing that you will want to witness in there…, Ginny.”

Ron understood then and he sat back down. He did not want to see her killed again.

“Remus what did Harry say just those seconds before you were thrown from the memory?” Albus asked. Quietly as if to lessen the memory of Ginny’s killing.

“He said that Voldemort was just a minion, which means to me that he was not the true power.”

Chapter 13 completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeSun 22 Feb 2009, 11:38 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 14

Hedwig's Love

Hedwig had fretted herself about leaving Harry alone for nearly two days and as she watched Harry sleep, she rocked back and forth on her tree limb. She was berating herself for not being there when he was attacked as she had sworn to herself the day that Ginny was killed that she would never leave his side again, or at least never allow Harry to be where she could not at least see him. Something had happened to her that one horrible day three years earlier. Something that she had not yet understood. She remembered that Dobby was feeding her when he suddenly went rigid with fear. She could remember what Dobby had said, “Master is in trouble.” It didn’t make any sense to her then because she could always tell when Harry was happy and when he was sad, ill, or just plain feeling miserable. She could tell what his moods were like but now…, now was different. For some reason she now knew things that she had never known before that one particular day. But why, what had happened to change all of this? How was it that she went from knowing these things to more than that. She somehow had begun longing for Harry and it made no sense to her at all. After all, she was only an owl.

It was true, and she had to admit that to herself that she had always watched over him, but when did she start to mother him? She had feared for him terribly when he told her about the Lethifolds attacking and had nearly nipped herself severely for not being there, for not being there to scold him for not resting when he should have. She blamed herself and it was all her fault that he was attacked. She should have been there with him to wake him, to warn him of the danger but she wasn’t. If she hadn’t spent the time and chased that werewolf so far, she would have been back in time but then she would have never found out that it was Remus and that he was most likely trying to find Harry and help him. But her love for Harry told her that this was something that he needed to do alone. Poor Harry hadn’t he had enough? Everything he touched, everyone he had ever loved had been taken from him. As she was thinking this she allowed a quiet but piteous hoot.

She watched through the flap in the tent as Harry rolled in his sleep and then her mind retreated back in time once more to that day when Dobby was feeding her. The cage door was opened and Dobby was giving her a nice and juicy mouse he had found for her. She was fond of Dobby too and she liked how Dobby would make certain of her treats as they came far more often than not. She liked how he doted on Harry and kept his house spotless clean and how he would keep her cage just as clean. She even admired how Dobby could sense Harry’s wants and needs even better than she could. He just seemed to always know when Harry was in trouble or just needed some help. She wished that she could do the very same.

It amazed her to discover that after that really bad day so long ago that something wonderful had happened to her. She wasn’t aware of it, but when Dobby had frozen in fear he suddenly said, “Master is in trouble, Master is needing Dobby’s help.” And he vanished and as he did, she followed after; and in Dobby’s magical wake. Had she grabbed Dobby as he vanished? She wasn’t sure but all she could remember was suddenly appearing and seeing a green light and pain beyond all imagination and then flying out of that pain only to see Ginny Weasley laying on the ground, and then being hit so hard from a force that instantly put her outside of the room. And then she was suddenly aware and cognoscente of everything. Far more aware than she had ever been. She knew things that ordinary owls should never know but then, she also knew that she was much brighter than the ordinary owl, but now she knew of things that animals even owls, could or should never know. She could now have perfect conversations with him when before it was just more like a sense of what was being said between the two and her feelings towards him now extended well beyond a simple pet’s caring for their master.

She suddenly realized that she really and truly loved Harry, but she did not understand why and it angered her that it was that love for him that had nearly cost him his life. Had she not been so intent on leading that werewolf so far off the track the other night, then she would have been back at his side to watch over him as she should have been. She had fretted herself back in full circle and was about to censure herself once again for not being where she most wanted to be all her life and that was to be by his side to watch over him, care for him and to love him forever. .

“How much longer must we hide here? It’s cold and filthy,” complained a pale faced wizard who had wrapped his torn cloak tightly about him as he peered out into the biting cold.

All he had seen in the past several weeks were mounds of snow that besieged their small cave in which they were hiding in and he hated it immensely. They had been running and hiding for several years and it was wearing down on him. Never enough to eat, always cold, never staying long in any one place, and he was sick of it. He was sick and tired of being constantly tired and dirty, and he was tired of being treated like a kid. His father would have never allowed such insolence, of such abuses that he had to endure if he were here.

“Now, now Draco,” Came the oily and silky voice of his protector. “You must be kept safe until we meet with the Dark Lord.”

“Ah yes, the dark Lord, He Who Cannot Defeat Harry Potter,” sneered Draco Malfoy.

“Draco, cynicism will get you no where. You must learn patience.”

“Patience?” Draco replied with a sarcastic drawl in his voice. “And just what have I been for the last four years? I have been nothing but patient, running, hiding, and waiting for my reward since that muggle loving old fool died.” And then haughtier than ever, he continued with his complaint. “I did what was expected of me! I led the Death Eaters into that school, I brought about Dumbledore’s death so where is my father, my mother? When do I take my rightful place at the Dark Lord’s right hand?” Draco was now staring at his protector with a look of furor in his face.

“Draco must I remind you that you did not fully complete your task?”

Malfoy did not answer the question. It did not matter to him how the task was completed as it was his to see done and it was accomplished. To him, it did not matter it was done. The task was his indeed but like his father had taught him and like the Dark Lord had done himself, he waited for the right moment to present itself and like a good leader he waited for the right person to present themselves so that he would not have to sully his hands to do dirty work. Draco had convinced himself that he was the leader of that group of Death Eaters and it was his decision to let a lesser person do the dirty work for him just as his father had always done and just as his father had always taught him.

And so he smiled as he faced his protector once more and said in his most sneering voice “And why should I have sullied my hands when there were others to do my bidding?”

The man stood in the shadows of the cave barely able to control his anger at such insolence that Draco dared to display but he managed to overcome his rage for the moment and took a few steps closer towards Draco before attempting to teach Draco a valuable lesson.

“Draco, do you not see where your father failed? Have you not learned from your father’s mistakes? Your father was a fool to…,”

“Don’t you have a go at my father or…!” Draco raged.

“Or you will do what Draco?” the man interrupted. “What will you do to me? Your father was a failure. He did not follow instructions; he did not do as he was told to do. He allowed others to do the job that was his alone to accomplish, and where is he now I ask?”

Draco’s hand made the slightest of moves and before he had brought his hand forward to meet the man in the cave his wand was sent flying across the chamber landing in a staccato of clicks on the cave floor.

“Draco, Draco, Draco, have I not told you before never to draw your wand against me? Crucio!”

Draco’s screams matched his writhing in pain as he fell to the ground. His body convulsing as his back arched with each movement of the man’s wand.

“We have done this before you and I, and yet you don't seem to get the message now do you?”

The man’s voice was barely a whisper but the cruelty of it could be heard hissing through his teeth as he spoke. Draco did not answer him so he lifted the tip of his wand a bit more and as Draco arched backwards his screams of agony kept match until the heels of Draco’s feet were nearly touching the back of his head. Draco’s screams turned into a screech of shear pain and agony as the man began to twitch his wand causing Draco’s body, still bent backwards to twitch and convulse in time with the wand tips movements. When Draco passed out the man released his hold on him. . .

Eight miles away Hedwig’s ears pricked forward and then pitched around trying to capture and locate the faint sounds of a screech that had pierced the nights air.

Chapter 14 completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeSun 22 Feb 2009, 11:43 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 15

Lost in Thought

Harry woke early the next morning to end a dream that he had been having that seemed to have lasted the entire night and he did not want this dream to ever end. It was the most perfect of dreams. His mother and father were in this dream and so was Sirius, Ron, Hermione, Remus was there and so was Tonks. All of the Weasleys were there too and especially Ginny.. They were all surrounding him. Laughing, hugging each other it was a great day, the best day ever. A most perfect and wonderful day with the sun shining and bright, the shy a deep and rich blue with soft white clouds dotting the blueness of the sky and the meats roasting over a pit fire smelled succulent and tasty. Everyone was celebrating and congratulating him and his beautiful young wife as they christened their new baby and affirmed Ron and Hermione as the God Parents.

He has had this dream before and it usually angered him as it was a taunt and a tease of everything that he could not have. Most of the time he would waken angry and obstinate because the dreams only served to remind him of his one and only wish but sometimes they served to awaken something deep inside of him. Something that Albus Dumbledore had tried for years to get him to understand, had tried to teach him. Would waken a warm feeling that was deep within him that allowed him to greet each day with a smile as it had today, this morning. It was his Love of life that greeted him on these occasions, a power that he knew he had but had not yet understood its purpose nor its power but today he knew that he would welcome it and embrace it.

“Hello.” He cooed to Hedwig as he exited his tent and saw her as she sat watching in her tree.

Hedwig spread her wings to him and glided down to land on his shoulders. Harry turned his head to face her and to stroke her feathers and he noticed the dullness of her eye’s. She had not slept in nearly three full days and Harry could see it in her.

“Hedwig, you have not slept?” It was more a statement than a question. When she did not answer Harry said, “That settles it. We stay here again for another day and you will rest.” Though his voice sounded in admonishment he was grinning when he said it and he ruffled her feathers playfully but he meant what he had said. And turned back into the tent and scooped her from his shoulder and placed her on his pillow. “And you my pretty girl, will rest here in comfort.”

Harry stepped outside and stretched as he looked about his campsite. He liked this area and felt that when it was all over he would like to live here for the rest of his life. I t was peaceful here and he felt at home. Harry marveled at the irony that had brought him to this part of the world. This area felt clean and pure and as he stretched his senses once more as he did every morning he satisfied himself the he who he was following had stayed yet another night just in front of him and they too were not going to move today either. He was not going to worry about today his and Hedwig were going to treat today as if it were a holiday. Hedwig was going to rest and he was going to…, he was going to go fishing. He chuckled as that thought entered into his minds eye just at that very moment.

As Harry surveyed his campground he spied another rabbit just at the same moment the rabbit spied him. In mid jump Harry had waved a hand at it and it froze, landing back on the ground in a dull thud.

“Ugh rabbit.” Harry muttered to himself as he bent over to pick it up but he could smile to himself as his daily meal would belong to Hedwig this day. “Rabbit is good but not every single day.”

Rabbit had been Harry’s staple since their arrival to the Blue’s with the occasional fish to break its monotony as in today. “Today Hedwig would be eating just a little higher on the food chain.” Harry had amused himself with that sentiment as he placed the meal near the tent.

Although Hedwig had not moved from Harry’s pillow she had not yet fallen asleep when Harry reentered his tent to gather the items that he would need to go fishing with. When she hooted her question asking where he intended to do his fishing his explanation startled her as he had said that he intended to apparate back to the lake that they had passed a few days earlier. The one that was in and near that meadow that he had liked so much. Hedwig was alarmed by this and he had to sooth her by saying that if they had not been noticed by his use of the Patronus charm then his apparation would not be noticed either. At this Hedwig insisted that she would go also arguing that she could rest and sleep just as well there as she could here and perhaps even better knowing that she would be near him too.

“You just won’t let me out of your sight will you?” He asked and as he turned to leave the tent he could have sworn that he had seen her smile in acknowledgment to his accusation.

With a pop Harry appeared near the edge of his lake and he slipped his rucksack from his shoulder. Harry took a few moments to find a spot that would suit him and also provide Hedwig ample area to both rest and to and again he had to chuckled as the answer came to him “baby sit him.” Hedwig had arrived moments later in her graceful manner and settled into a tree that gave her a great view of her surroundings and she watched as Harry sought out his spot of comfort for their lazy day ahead.

Harry had found a nice comfortable spot in short order. It was a tree that grew right on the edge of the lake and in his mind it was perfect. He could sit with his back propped against the tree’s trunk and still be able to soak in the days sunshine. Harry cast his line and settled himself in and within moments he began to watch the water. The ripples of the lake were cyclic with their patterns and as a ripple would start from its center a pattern began to form in its wake and Harry began to relate to those patterns.

Harry fixated on these ripples as they represented time as they spread outward and Harry began to equate them to his awareness of his quest. The death of his parents and Voldemort’s attempt on his life was the pebble that started the ripple. The first set of ripples he has equated as his years at Hogwarts and the evilness that Voldemort had spread. As he grew so did the size of the rings of the ripples and so did his understanding of what he was being trained for. It wasn’t until Harry had returned home after his sixth year when he realized what he was to learn and what he had not yet learned. Harry had counted on Dumbledore to prepare him for what he knew he would have to face but he was killed before that could happen.

Harry tossed a pebble into the lake at that moment to set the stage again for his musings. Like the pebble causing an emptiness as it hit the water Harry realized that the hours and days that followed Dumbledore’s death he to was empty and lost. He recounted those moments in time to try himself to divine some hidden secret, some message that Dumbledore had given but he might have failed to recognize but saw no pattern. None that he could recognize and so he sought for Remus to help him understand. The day before he and Remus were to meet Harry had decided to allow Lupin in on the task that Dumbledore had set before him. What had happened was that he unleashed every feeling that he had ever possessed and exposed himself to Remus’s scrutiny and he was amazed that Lupin had not stopped him nor questioned him during the whole oration. In the end Harry finally seen his end. He like the ripple would continue on with no purpose unless he was stopped and yet he did not know where or what he was to do or go. He knew at last that he was lost

At the end Remus had agreed to help him but he had also place a condition to this help. Harry was to return to Hogwarts to finish his education. Harry bridled at this but Remus countered harshly. Something that Harry had never seen from his friend before. Remus has asked if it was his intention to set aside everything that has been done for him to ensure his survival and if by leaving school he was honoring what his parents had done for him as well as Sirius and Dumbledore, if he was honoring their memory by abandoning what their sacrifice had given him…, his chance for education and life. Harry had felt properly chastised by Remus’s outburst and he agreed to return to school.. something in the way that Remus has spoken to him forced him to relive each and every memory that he possessed of their deaths until he had numbed himself to the point where he could see the mechanics of each of the actions that had been taken but something struck his memory that he had not seen before his anger at his murderer had caused him not to see something very important to him. He had failed to see the answer to his problem even as it was being given to him.

Harry separated from his reverie long enough to check his line and to see where Hedwig had deposited herself and then slipped back into his thoughts and began to dissect that clue that and he abhorred the thought, that Severus Snape had given him. He had chased after Snape intending to avenge Dumbledore, but instead he had been taken to task. What he had construed as being toyed with, Harry had finally understood what Snape was telling him and demonstrating to him by toying with him. Snape was demonstrating exactly what Voldemort would do to him by taunting and sneering at him all the while telling him how he would have to attack. Without thought, without wand, without voice, and most importantly without hesitation. Could this had been that argument that Hagrid had told him about? The argument between Snape and Dumbledore? As Harry left Mrs. Figg’s home he had decided that he would need to sound this theory and revelation out against Hermione.

Harry had sent Hedwig with a note asking Hermione if she would meet him as soon as possible and her reply was that she would but it would be at least a week before she could get away from her parents for a day and that she would sent him a note when and where they could meet. Harry had spent the following week trying to see Snape in a new light which he found most difficult. Snape had given an ultimate sacrifice of his own if he were truly still a member of the Order of the Phoenix. He had now sealed his own fate and severed all ties thus becoming once and for all a true Death Eater. There would be no way for Snape to return without being killed. Harry could almost feel sorry for him as he tried to envision the predicament that Snape had allowed himself to be steered into. For some reason Harry could not imagine Snape ever allowing himself to be used but in this instance he had been and it affected Harry in a way that he could not understand.

Chapter 15 Continued

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeSun 22 Feb 2009, 11:44 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 15 continued

Lost in Thought

Harry’s pole had bent in its strain as a fish had taken its bait. Quickly Harry cought up his pole and effortlessly landed in a small but still edible sized fish which he placed onto a tie line that would allow his catch to remain alive and fresh in the waters of the lake while he set his pole to continue his fishing. Having reset his line and casting it back out Harry settled back again to continue his reverie picking up right where he had left off. Pigwidgeon has shown up at his window two days later with a note attached from Hermione asking him to meet her at the Leaky Cauldron for lunch the following Monday and although Ron had allowed her to use Pig he would not be there. Silently Harry was grateful that she had not asked Ron to be present.

The rest of the week at the Dursley’s past without incident as Uncle Vernon and Dudley both evaded Harry at every opportunity and Aunt Petunia had recommended that he not attend family meals during his stay which he gratefully agreed to. Aunt Petunia had softened somewhat to his presence and even his meals which were brought to his room were better than he had ever had or could remember. One evening she had even asked if she could talk to him which he suspiciously agreed to. He was curious by her sudden change of heart towards him and even wondered if his Uncle Vernon even knew of her softening but he would not ask unless it was brought into subject. Aunt Petunia had wanted to know what if anything he could remember of his Mothers death and so Harry told her everything that he could remember and perhaps embellished a bit on her selflessness in both protecting him and sacrifice which to Harry seemed to relieve his Aunt and she seemed to straighten herself a bit more in pride as he spoke. Then she asked the most amazing question to Harry’s disbelief she had asked if he had any intention to avenge his mothers death.

When she had asked him this he noted a glimmer of hope within her eyes. He didn’t know why he had done what he had done but when she asked him that question he rose from where he was setting, crossed the room to her and hugged her tightly and whispered in her ear “With vengeance.” Petunia returned her nephews hug and whispered again a thank you in his ear.

Although Aunt Petunia had warmed up to him somewhat she never broached the subject again and Harry recognized that the subject had been closed permanently between them. The week pasted quickly and on Monday morning Harry stood on a quiet corner of Little Winging, Surrey, Harry stretched out his wand arm and waited for the purple colored Knightbus to arrive. Feeling a compression of air about him Harry stepped back just in time as the bus suddenly appeared before him. Boarding the bus Harry noticed that Stan Shunpike had not taken his place as the Knightbus conductor and a measly looking man of wizened years was now performing the task. Harry took his seat after telling the conductor his destination and waited for his stop which would be four stops later.

Harry had only just ordered his own butterbeer when the familiar voice of Hermione Granger called out to him in greeting. Rising to welcome her she startled him by giving him a firm embrace and kissing him on his cheek in her greeting and then they both took a seat. When Harry’s butterbeer arrived he quickly ordered another for Hermione and then he launched himself into his explanation of why he had ask for this meeting. Hermione remained quiet for the most part but several times she had stopped him and asked him to repeat a particular detail and when he told her of their last encounter she had him repeat it several times over and each time she had pursed her lips in thought as if she were forming the images of the scene in her own minds eye.

After a long silence she began slowly as if testing the waters because she knew how Harry felt about Snape, “Do you think that he was trying to tell you exactly what you would need to learn yet?”

To her own amazement Harry answered with a yes.

“Did he tell you how?”

Harry thought for a moment before he answered and then he said “I think that he was about to but the rest of the Death Eaters showed up and they were going to kill me but he forbade it and then they all ran off.”

Hermione has suddenly snapped her fingers and said abruptly “Of course! You said that he kept flicking off your spells even before you could get them out and he kept telling you that you needed to keep your mouth shut…, that’s it Harry!”

Harry grinned at her and she looked puzzled then asked “What are you grinning about?”

“That’s what I had thought too. It didn’t make any sense to me and I thought that he was toying with me before he would kill me, but I had a long talk with Remus last week and it all made sense to me just then what Snape was saying but I wasn’t for sure and that why I wanted you to hear it too.”

Hermione was beaming at him because Harry had really never thought things through before especially when it came to Snape but she had always known that there had to have been reason for Dumbledore’s and even Remus’s trust in him.

Harry and Hermione had finished their butterbeers and spent the next couple of hours wondering through Diagon Alley before Harry said that he needed to go before the Dursley’s would think him gone long enough to question him as to his whereabouts and Hermione said that she still has some shopping to do while she was in London so they departed from each other but before they did Hermione suggested that he begin practicing non verbal magic which Harry had to remind her that he was not yet of age but said that as soon as he turned seventeen he was moving out and he would be where he could practice and Dobby would be with him then and he would be able to help. Hermione also promised to come to Grimwauld Place and assist him whenever she could. Just as the Knightbus appeared Harry suggested that since they would all be of age then perhaps they could all move in with him for the remainder of the summer which Hermione readily agreed and adding that she would ask Ron what he thought about the idea adding that she felt he would think that it was a brilliant idea which made the both of them laugh as she nearly copied his voice when she had said that.During the rest of the summer before his birthday Harry had formed a plan in his mind.

The fishing pole was inching its way down the embankment before Harry realized that he had caught another addition to his days menu. He was thinking how far he had come since those days when Ron and Hermione had helped him with his non verbal skills. Harry, Ron, and Hermione all practiced until they could summon, cast, or curse just by thinking but Harry seemed able to carry that step much further along. Harry had found a spot within himself that he could not explain to the others that glowed within him and warmed him and gave him strength. It was a strange and yet comfortable feeling one that he knew he had felt before but just could not remember why. When they asked him about it he didn’t know how to answer them let alone describe the feeling that came over him. It had happened during one very frustrating moment when Harry in his consternation caused a memory of his mother to form in his mind that he never knew existed and he turned to reach for the picture of his parents that Hagrid had given him and it just flew into his hands. He wasn’t thinking about it, it just happened

“Did you use a summoning charm?” Ron had asked.

Harry was stunned by what had happened but he replied “No, I don’t know what happened I was thinking of my mum and it just came to me. I, I just wanted to see her that’s all.”

“So you have to be thinking about your mum and you can do it then?” Ron had asked.

“Ron don’t be thick!” Hermione blasted. “Harry, were you concentrating?” she asked.

“No that’s just it.” Harry replied. “I was doing like you said and got mad because…, well because you and Ron were able to do it but I couldn’t and then…, I don’t know a memory of my mother came up and I was wishing that she were here.” He was still holding the picture and he asked “Is that how you do it?”

Hermione had to say no that she just used a simple summoning charm and thought the incantation for it. But when he asked if she or Ron felt a warm feeling about them when they did it they both shook their heads no and didn’t understand the question and he didn’t know how to explain it other than it was just a release

Chapter 15 Completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeWed 25 Feb 2009, 6:54 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 16

Dumbledore's Interview

“Mr. Weasley if you would be so kind as to remain behind while the others attend the meeting, I would like you to fill me in on how our young Mr. Potter has so thoroughly and resourcefully managed to learn some very advanced skills.”

Ron gulped as he turned to face Dumbledore’s portrait while the others were gathering their travel cloaks in preparation to leave for the meeting that was to be held in his home in the next few minutes Dumbledore was smiling down at him as Ron’s face reddened. He had wanted to attend the meeting but at the same time he could not deny Dumbledore this interview either.

Ron turned back to the portrait and asked, “What would you like to know?”

Ron began his story by telling Dumbledore of their practicing the non verbal spells after Harry had taken over number 12 Grimwauld Place and how Harry was struggling with that practice when he had inadvertently cause the picture of his mother and father to zoom into his hand altogether unbidden but yet that is what he was thinking about. Ron had to explain that a bit further because it wasn’t the picture that Harry had wanted to see, it was his mother that he had wanted, though he wasn’t for sure if that was actually how it happened. When Dumbledore asked what prompted this training session during the summer holiday

Ron gave him a quizzical look which Dumbledore did reply to, “I was once a young lad too, and school was the last thing on my mind when I was on holiday but please continue.”

That was when Ron told him about what Harry had thought about his last encounter with Snape and that he felt Snape was trying to instruct him in what he still needed to master.

“And Professor Snape would be quite right you know.”

As Ron finished his story which carried on into their seventh year, he ended by telling Dumbledore something that he felt was odd.. “Professor, I should tell you that Harry was going down to the Chamber of Secrets during the year. I followed him one night into the Chamber and there was a Library down there and I saw Harry reading books. And I think I should tell you that after a while…, he started acting strange.”

Dumbledore looked startled by this information and he asked how Harry was acting.

“Well it was weird, he was like withdrawn almost as if he were preoccupied by something, but I never told anyone about that not even Hermione.”

Dumbledore remained quiet for a very long time before he finally spoke. “Mr. Weasley have you ever mentioned this to anyone else?” Ron had answered no to that question and asked if he should at least tell Remus about it.

“I would ask that you not say anything about this for a time if you would.” Dumbledore replied.

“Of course Professor.” was the only response Ron could think of.

“Mr. Weasley could you tell me anything more about what you saw in the Chamber?”

“Sir, in our second year it was said that only the heir of Slytherin could open the Chamber. So that means that Harry….” Ron could not finish the sentence as he could hardly imagine Harry as being a descendant of such a terrible person.

Dumbledore, seeing Ron’s confusion, began to explain. “You must first understand Mr. Weasley, that Salazar Slytherin was not an evil person nor were his thoughts. His only contention was whom shall be taught at Hogwarts and he felt so strongly about it that he left. He was not biased nor shall we say prejudiced, but he failed to see what would happen to our kind if we did not allow others of lesser purity to attend..”

“Do you mean that the wizarding world would have eventually die out?” Ron asked.

“That is correct. But over the millennia..,” Dumbledore continued, “That idea did turn into perversion by only a few and as time continued it fostered hate and rebellion and perverted a simple idea of maintaining the secrecy of our society into what is happening today. Now do you understand how Salazar is not to be blamed for what is currently happening?”

Ron had to think about this for a short moment before he answered. “Yes I do understand, but Harry?”

“Harry is indeed a direct relation of Salazar Slytherin Mr. Weasley, and that is why he is able to open and close the Chamber of Secrets as easily as Tom Riddle had, but understand this, our young Mr. Potter’s line is most pure and these descendants over the years acquiesced as they saw our world on the threshold of distinction and recognized the need to keep Hogwarts open and available to persons of lesser magical prowess or blood lines. Whereas this recognition drove a wedge between the relations and that drove them so far apart, that the blood ties were eventually forgotten. Had Salazar Slytherin had the foresight that the other three founders had, he too would have relented in his belief to hold and protect the purity of our world.”

Ron remained quiet for a very long time. What Dumbledore had just said made his mind swirl in thought. Ron had never thought that an idea could have been so perverted and in such a way. He had always thought that the division had started with Slytherin himself and that he was the evil one. And then it hit him.

“Do you think that Harry had found that out?”

Dumbledore thought for just a moment and then replied casually, “No I don’t think he has. But I do venture to guess that he has discovered where and how Voldemort had learned his particular magic and I am in hopes that if he had as well, that he intends to use that magic or its knowledge to protect himself. But what puzzles me is why he feels that Voldemort was but a minion.”

Ron looked just as puzzled by that statement but managed to say “I haven’t a clue. He said nothing to myself or Hermione after he did what he had to do, and we thought it better not to question him. We had our own worries at the moment.”

“Yes, quite right Mr. Weasley I do understand about Ginny and I suspect that was in part one of the reasons why Harry felt the need to go.”

“But none of us blamed him for what happened to her!” Ron exclaimed.

“Yes of course, but Harry blames himself and it is because of this he feels the need to end this tragedy at its beginnings, but I fear that he may not realize that it is he that is the last remaining heir to Salazar Slytherin. And, I believe that it is he himself that he senses, and is not aware of it.”

This caused Ron to think a bit more and then he ventured a question that no one had thought to ask since Snape had done what he did. “Sir, do you think that Harry may feel that its Snape..,”

“Professor Snape, Mr. Weasley” Dumbledore had corrected.

Ron had reddened at the correction and then pulled himself up straighter and said stiffly, “No sir.., it is Snape. I, nor any member of my family has any respect, nor can we ever display any respect of any kind towards him, so as I was saying, do you feel that Harry may think that Snape is the final link to all of this madness? And so he is gone after him?”

Dumbledore sighed and then answered, “That is what I am afraid of Ron and Harry will be wrong if he does.”

“Sir, can you tell me now why it is that you trust …, Snape so much?”

Dumbledore sighed again and then he said “No I cannot, but you must understand that I do trust him even after what has been done. But you must know that Professor Snape did not want to do it but it was I that forced it upon him. It was I that insisted upon him doing what he agreed to do”

There was a silence so thick in the office that was suffocating as Ron looked down to the floor not knowing what to say or ask after hearing that admission of complicity on Dumbledore’s behalf.

“Could you tell me any more of what you observed Harry doing while he ventured into the Chamber Ron?”

The question from Dumbledore had not only broken the silence that fell between them but it also shook Ron back to reality as he was struggling to comprehend what Dumbledore had just confessed. It was to Ron, as if he understood that Albus had ordered his own death.

“Well no not really. There was an antechamber hidden behind a large statue at one end of the chamber. Harry spoke in Parsel tongue and the wall changed to a doorway which Harry went inside of. The chamber inside looked like a small library or an office with a library inside. Harry took several books from the shelf and began reading them and when he finished he sealed the chamber and when he left he sealed the entry to the Chamber of secrets and that’s all that I can tell you about it.”

Ron was looking at the portrait as Dumbledore considered what he had just been told. Breaking the silence once again that existed between the two of them Dumbledore told Ron that he should get to the meeting and just before Ron was preparing to leave he asked Ron if he could find an artist that could paint two more portraits of him one for Grimwauld Place and the other for the Burrow so that he could remain in contact with everyone. Donning his travel cloak Ron assured him that he would take care of it immediately.

Ron arrived home just as the meeting was coming to an end. As he entered the Kitchen Remus was telling everyone “While I am sure that this is just a false alarm we felt it necessary to let the separate Heads aware of the possibility that a situation may come to exist and that you will have been apprised should further action be needed. So once again my friends, this is just a heads up warning.”

Hermione saw Ron enter the room and she edged next to him and asked, “Why did Dumbledore ask you to stay behind?”

"He wanted to know if I knew how Harry got to be so strong in his magic that’s all.”

“And what did you tell him?”

“I told him that we practiced together during the summer.”

Hermione thought this over for a minute and then she asked, “Did you tell him about Harry entering the Chamber to study?”

Ron stood staring at her before he asked “How did you know about that?”

“Well it makes sense really don’t you think?”

Ron was completely befuddled by that remark and didn’t know what to say to her.

“Oh think about it Ron. Voldemort had to have learned it from somewhere didn’t he? And that type of magic isn’t taught at Hogwarts now is it?”

When Ron didn’t answer her she continued on. “How do you suppose that Tom Riddle learned of Horcruxes and the dark magics that he used when he was in school if they did not teach it Ron?”

“I, I dunno.” was all Ron could manage to say at the moment.

“Well it makes sense doesn’t it? Tom Riddle found out about the Chamber and so he enters it and then he finds things that he doesn’t understand which is why he asked Professor Slughorn about the Horcruxes and so he goes back down to the chamber and learns how and where and when to create them, and he learns other magics too that made him so powerful.”

He thought of what she was saying and saw with a clearing tenacity, the truth of what he had missed. “Harry was learning what Voldemort had learned to defeat him with his own callousness, with his own magic!”

Hermione smiled at him as he suddenly realized the simplicity of what Harry had done. “How did you know?” Ron had asked.

“Harry asked me what I thought about it and well, it just made sense. Voldemort had to have learned it form somewhere while he was at school and we knew that he had opened the Chamber of secrets while he was still there and well…,” she spread her hands out as if to complete her sentence.

“Why didn’t you say anything to me then?” Ron asked bewildered that she would with hold anything from him.

“Because you would have followed him Ron, and he wanted privacy. This was something that he had to do alone and I respected that.” Hermione regretted the sharpness in her tone. Ron was stunned by her tone and decided not to press her any further and set out to find Remus instead.

Chapter 16 Continued

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeWed 25 Feb 2009, 6:56 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 16 continued

Dumbledore's Interview

“Sirs, Dobby is wanting to ask you a favor sirs.”

Fred and George turned to face Dobby as he addressed them and then followed him as Dobby beckoned them over to a quiet corner. Dobby presented his plan to give Winky a purpose and also to provide The protection that he felt Missy Molly needed while his Master was away and so his Wheezy’s could do what they needed to do to help bring his Master back home more quickly.

Fred quickly understood Dobby’s dilemma which was how to get Winky to think that she was now a proper House Elf and to get Hermione to believe that Winky was being paid and was a proper employee. George half heartily suggested that Dobby marry Winky and he and Fred would increase Dobby’s wages to include Winky’s pay and Hermione would be told outright that Winky worked for Harry but was on loan as a nanny.. Fred quickly vetoed that idea when he suggested just being truthful to Hermione and telling her that they would pay Winky’s wages but somehow they had to make Winky believe that she was not being paid. While the twins both bantered back and forth obviously forgetting that Dobby was still standing there his head followed the exchanges back and forth in a nearly dizzying pace.

Hermione heard them arguing between themselves and intervened. She had been listening in after she heard what they were arguing about until she couldn’t take it anymore. Though Hermione was still proactive about the rights of magical creatures she realized after a fashion, that House Elves had a right to work as they desired provided that an option of pay was given first and outright. Both brothers looked with great incredulity at each other, at what they just heard her to say. Hermione just smirked at them and walked away.

“Well Dobby that solves our problem.” Fred and George both said in unison. “Dobby go get Winky and we’ll talk to her for you.”

Dobby smiled but had to tell them that Winky was under Madam Pomfrey’s care for the next couple of days but as soon as she was eligible he would retrieve her and bring her to them.

Dobby was elated that there would be no lies no misconceptions that he would have to play a part in. It was near time for him to make his nightly check on his Missy Molly even though he knew that she was as safe as safe could possibly be where she slept at her Grandma Wheezy’s home and so when no one was looking Dobby snapped his fingers and with a pop he was gone.

Hermione found her way back to Ron and pulled him to the side to broach the subject about Harry once again and what he and Dumbledore had discussed. Ron had asked her if she ever thought that Harry may have been an heir of Slytherin to which Hermione had to say no, that she had never even considered that possibility. Ron then launched himself into a deep explanation about how Slytherin’s ideals had been perverted over the millennia and that when the school was founded there was ample witches and wizards to accommodate the need for the school and how he, Slytherin refused to believe that there may come a time where the population may dwindle and their way of life be threatened by the possibility of distinction and that was what caused the rift between him and the other founders who where not only looking at the times but also of the future as well.

Hermione considered for a moment all that Ron had told her and then asked “So do you think that Harry sensed another heir to this perversion and he is after that person?”

Ron could only shake his head and then replied, “I don’t know my dear. Being a minion means that he was taking orders from someone else.”

Hermione thought for a moment and then added, “That is true, but Voldemort is all that we knew about …, I wonder…, how did Dumbledore defeat the Dark Wizard Grindelwald? Do we even know where or what happened to him?”

Ron stared at her and then said, “I don’t know how he was defeated. Do you remember when Harry told us about the duel at the Ministry between Dumbledore and Voldemort?”

Hermione nodded her head yes, so Ron continued, “Harry said that Dumbledore had told Voldemort that there were worse things other than death.”

“Yes he did say that and we don’t know exactly what Dumbledore did either so…,”

“Hermione,” Ron had cut her off, “Are you thinking that Dumbledore did not completely defeat him? That Voldemort is following his orders and …,”

Hermione cut in just then and said, “I think that Voldemort tried to take over thinking that his Master was completely lost to him. It makes sense Ron because Voldemort was in school when this happened and he was getting stronger by the minute. I think that he was being coached.”

Bill was silently listening in on their conversation and was nodding his head as the pieces were fitting themselves together and made sense. He would have to talk this over between Remus and Kingsley to see what their impressions were before approaching Dumbledore with what his younger brother and Hermione had summed up. But he did not want to think that Harry would be a member of one of the worse lines of decadency that had ever plagued the wizarding world. Just then Ron noticed Bill standing near and immediately changed the subject to the extra portraits that Dumbledore had asked for and Bill took that as cue to enter into that conversation by saying that he knew just the person and would never suspect the reason for wanting portraits of such a great man at the Burrow and again in Bill’s office since none other than members of the Order knew about Grimwauld Place

Chapter 16 Completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeWed 25 Feb 2009, 7:00 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 17

Gryffindors Heir?

Harry had now caught three more fish to add to the days meal, as he cast out his line for the sixth time. It was getting close to noon but wanted at least another good sized fish for his evening meal. He had been daydreaming all morning long about what he had done to prepare himself to finally meet with Voldemort and the steps that he had taken to prepare himself mentally and magically to ensure Voldemort’s defeat and his superiority over him. It was ironic to him that he of all people would have spent so many hours studying the books that he had found inside that hidden office chamber deep in the bowels of Hogwarts, the one that was itself hidden within the Chamber of Secrets. He had discovered that this room must have been the private study of Salazar Slytherin himself and the books that he had found taught him to an extreme level, the arts of Legillimency and Occlumency. He had found books on Archaic magic, Magics practice by ancient Druids, magics of the obscure and of the Arcane and magics of the deepest of the Dark magics. He had even found volumes of the type of magic that Dumbledore himself had said, that he possessed in great strength and abundance, the magics of Love and of the heart.

Harry nearly laughed out loud when he compared his studying to that of Hermione’s. If she only knew how much and how hard he had studied his last year at Hogwarts she would keel over in faint. When he thought that he had laughed so hard that he had caused Hedwig to stir. He did study very diligently having read every single book in that library and he had practiced very diligently as Dobby himself offered to work with him in his practice using the Room of Requirement when Harry needed to practice magics that would or could hurt Dobby something horribly. He had gotten so good that he could easily handle fifty to sixty boggarts without consideration and without as much as one sound from his lips. He had gotten so good that he almost completely banished the Room of Requirement itself and that was when he knew that he was ready.

Remus remained true to his promise of helping Harry in finding the remaining Horcruxes, bringing them to the school, and if it weren’t for Hermione and Ron’s help in discovering their protective spells, he would not have had the time to learn what he had needed to know. Harry knew that he owed so many his very own life and at times he felt that he owed a life’s debt to so many that lost theirs in keeping him safe and protected so that he could do what he was meant to do. Here in the next few days two weeks at the most he would pay back everyone that believed in him, supported him, and protected him. And he would avenge those deaths…., Harry’s line caught another big one that broke him from his reverie.

“Ron did you know that Dobby wants to bring Winky here as Molly’s nanny?”

Ron was quick to answer this one thing that he would need to head misgivings off to neutral territory before she got her wind up.

“Yes he did mention it to me, but I told him that we could not afford it just yet. Did he speak to you about it?”

“Well no, not really I think that he was asking your brothers if they would pay for her wages.”

“And…,?” was all that Ron could think of saying at the moment knowing how Hermione felt about House Elf enslavement and the such.

“I told them to ask if she would be willing to work for us and then offer her an acceptable wage and if she refused a wage then to ask if she would be willing to accept the position under normal acceptable conditions for a House Elf.”

Ron couldn’t believe his own ears and looked dubious at her.

“Well I learned a few things in the Muggle University about contract labor and room and board are considered as acceptable and legal wages and well we do provide for their well being when their working under normal conditions don’t we?”

Ron was not going to argue with her on this point nor was he going to goad her about her previous beliefs about SPEW, concerning magical creatures and their rights.

Hermione was studying Law at the Muggle University and had secretly planned to rewrite the Laws and Statutes pertaining to magical creatures and during her studies she learned that if a people did not accept the laws given to protect them then they were considered moot and usually after a fashion wiped from the books so she revised her plans to include words such as “If the creature so chooses…,” and, “All creatures have unalienable rights should they choose to exercise…,” as well as, “Payment for services rendered must first be offered…,” She would rewrite the Laws so that the Creatures could dictate their own terms and be free of enslavement.

Ron knew the fallacy of her ideas but as her husband, he would support her and then there was Hagrid, who had almost single handedly convinced her that to force her philosophy onto certain creatures was just as bad as enslavement itself and if she truly wanted to provide justice to them then she should at least provide them the choices of working for free or for payment. And, he also used Dobby as the example. Dobby was willing to work for free for Harry Potter or Albus Dumbledore and even for Hermione but then by the same token he was just as willing to charge payment to other wizarding families for his services. When she took the time to ask Dobby of this, Dobby wholly agreed with what Hagrid had said about being at least given the chance and the right to either accept payment or work willingly for free.

Ron knew the fallacy of her ideas but as her husband, he would support her and then there was Hagrid, who had almost single handedly convinced her that to force her philosophy onto certain creatures was just as bad as enslavement itself and if she truly wanted to provide justice to them then she should at least provide them the choices of working for free or for payment. And, he also used Dobby as the example. Dobby was willing to work for free for Harry Potter or Albus Dumbledore and even for Hermione but then by the same token he was just as willing to charge payment to other wizarding families for his services. When she took the time to ask Dobby of this, Dobby wholly agreed with what Hagrid had said about being at least given the chance and the right to either accept payment or work willingly for free.

Bill had sidled up to his family as they grouped themselves to say their goodnights and he reiterated his promise to Ron to procure two more portraits of Dumbledore. Hermione looked quizzical so he immediately explained their purpose so that Dumbledore could at least hear what is being said in the meetings.

“So what was decided?” Ron had asked.

“Nothing really, other than to just keep our eye’s and ears open for anything odd going on. You know, like known ex-Death Eaters meeting up again, odd happenings that cannot be explained through normal investigations, things of that sort.” Bill replied amicably. “There’s no sense in creating any panic or involving the Ministry when we ourselves don’t know anything. Besides it had been three good years of nothing odd going on about, and no rumors to be said about either,.” He continued on to say.

As Bill finished talking Remus stepped into the conversation and added a final word of his own. “I believe Harry and trust what he knows, but I somehow feel that this is something that he needs to do alone.”

Ron and Hermione both shot him a look that could have killed because they knew only all too well what Harry had suffered through the years but they being his closest of friends, had suffered through it themselves along with him.

“I know what you must be thinking but I believe that the war is truly over and who or what ever Harry is after is really Harry’s way of making sure that nothing like this could ever start up again..” Remus had to throw up his arms to fend off Hermione as she puffed herself up but before she could get started Remus quickly added,
”Look I believe that I know where he is or at least the general location so I will be going out again. And if I find him, I will have a chat with him.”

This seemed to settle Hermione down a bit Though she knew in her own heart that he was probably correct. This was something that Harry would feel that he had to do alone and that is what bothered her so much. Ron had remained quiet and if anyone knew what he was thinking right then they would have sworn that he and Hermione shared the same thought . Because Ron also knew that this was something that Harry needed to work out for his own self as well.

“So then does everyone think the same way that we here really have nothing to worry about then?” George had asked the group.

“Pretty much so I’m afraid.” Ron answered, and then with a grin he added “But lets not tell Mum anything yet you know how she gets when she doesn’t have anything to fret about.”

“Ronald Weasley you are positively wicked to do that to your own mother.” Hermione retorted,

“But it would give her time to do what she’s been dying to do.” Said Ron.

“And what would that be?” Fred had asked.

“A reason to dote over her grand daughter.” Ron answered.

Hermione beamed as she was just picturing the two of them together.

“And if Winky were to take on the position as Molly’s Governess then perhaps it would help to get your mother out of that house what with the added security of Winky being present.”

Both Fred and George chimed at that remark as they remembered nearly being beaten to death by Hermione just a few days earlier for taking Molly to their shop, “And just who is the doting mother that feels this is the only place where she is safe?”

Hermione looked cross at them and reaffirmed her beliefs by saying “Well, it is where you two are concerned.”

Even Remus had to hide his chuckles at that statement but they all knew that Molly was no less protected when Fred and George where around as the two of them were caught on numerous occasions fawning over their niece.

Bill had collected his cloak and was about to leave when Hermione asked him to let Molly and Fleur know that she would be along shortly and if Dobby were still there to please send him home for the night. Bill assured her that he would pass along Dobby’s instructions to return home and said that she should perhaps just let herself in if she were to be coming late.

“Please don’t wait up for me but I don’t think I’ll be long.” And with that she planted a goodnight kiss on his cheek and stepped back as he apparated directly from the kitchen.

Remus had already donned his cloak as he himself was about to leave when Hermione stopped him. “Remus may we and she indicated to Ron also have a quick word?”

“I do have some time still. What's on your mind?”

Ron looked a bit puzzled himself as Hermione indicated that they should have a seat at the table. Hermione turned her head to acknowledge Dobby as he popped into the kitchen and said, “Dobby, if you would please may we have some fresh tea?”

“Right away Mrs. Wheezy ma’am right away!” and he ran off to the stove to start a fresh pot.

“Remus,” she started as they had all taken a seat. “I’m puzzled. Ron has just told us that Professor Dumbledore has said that Harry is a direct descendant of Salazar Slytherin.” Remus did not seem shocked by this statement which sounded more as if it were a question and so he responded to her.

“Well, It is possible and if Albus does think it to be true…, You two must understand that Dumbledore was most interested in James when we were in school. He watched and treated James almost the very same way as he did with Harry and he also followed Lily’s progress just as equally. None of us thought very much about it because the two were the top of their classes and both became Head Boy and Head Girl so it made sense to us why he followed their course.”

“But.., we thought that Harry might have been from the line of Gryffindor.” Ron answered, following the tact that he though Hermione was taking. Remus remained silent for a long while deep in thought.

“Pardon me Sir’s and Mrs., your tea is ready.” Dobby interrupted their conversation and as he poured their tea and served them he turned to Hermione and said that his Missy Molly was sound asleep and as he served Ron Dobby told him that his Percy was still at the house, and to Remus he smiled and said very considerately that his intended had already bade her goodbye’s and retired to her home for the evening. And then he asked if he would be needed for the rest of the evening.

“No Dobby, but thank you for asking.” Hermione answered him.

Chapter 17 Continued

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeWed 25 Feb 2009, 7:00 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 17 continued

Gryffindors Heir?

Ron and Remus returned to talk out the idea of Harry being even remotely related to Slytherin but Hermione remained very quiet and deep in thought. Suddenly she snapped her fingers and exclaimed “It fits, it makes sense.”

Both Ron and Remus swiveled in their seats and looked at her in astonishment at her out burst. Her face was gleaming with excitement and a finger was bouncing in the air as if keeping time or in checking off items of an invisible checklist.

“Hermione, Love of my heart,” Ron broached, “Would you like to let us in on what makes sense?”

“It’s simple.” She said.

“What's simple my dear?” Ron continued to stare at her.

“Remus would you please follow up on this?” She said.

“Of course I will if only I knew what you were talking about.” He replied with a smile on his face.

Hermione began by asking questions directed to Remus as if for his approval. “Professor Dumbledore followed Harry’s father all throughout his school years and became even closer to him after his graduation right?”

Remus nodded in agreement so she continued to her next point.

“He also followed Lily Evans with equal care?” again Remus nodded.

“He was most excited and pleased when they were married?”

Remus now sat up and asked how did you know that?”

Hermione’s grin turned mischievous and asked “When Harry was born how did Dumbledore react? Would you say that it was more like an ecstatic Grandfather?”

Remus was now at the edge of his chair as a look of realization began to mask his face. “Are you suggesting that Albus is …,?”

“No.” Hermione cut him off and quickly added “If you were tracking, investigating, and immured into the fate of a blood line and the two that most interested you were to ..., let us just say …, merge …,” and Hermione trailed off.

Ron snapped his own fingers “I’d be almost as happy as a parent especially if it meant…,” and Remus picked up the sentence.

“Repairing and ancient old rent in an already torn and separated society.”

Ron’s face turned sullen when he brought up the fact that Lily was muggle born and if Harry’s Aunt Petunia was anything like what Harry had said.

“Ron she doesn’t have to know that she is spawned from Gryffindor.” Hermione said laying a hand on his. “Look at me, I’m muggle born for as far back as we know, but somewhere, some how, there must have been someone magical in my line to have left a dormant gene for all those years in my blood.”

Remus was following her theory very closely as certain things that she was saying fit very neatly in what he himself had observed of Dumbledore’s actions those years following Harry’s birth and then his intense scrutiny and idle pushing’s when Harry started school. It was as if Dumbledore was most interested in how Harry perceived things rather than what he had learned from his experiences. He had often wondered why Dumbledore placed Harry with the Dursley’s rather then have him fostered by a family such as the Weasley’s. It was to keep Harry from being prematurely tainted by factious beliefs and prejudices though he did not discount the form of protection that did exist within Lily’s blood and her sisters blood that Dumbledore had caused.

Remus looked at Hermione and said very proudly “Hermione you are the most intelligent witch of our age.” And he stood and bowed to her. Placing a hand on both hers and Ron’s shoulders he spoke to Ron “Lad, if I were you I would do everything in my power to hold onto to her and her love and never let go.”

“That my friend has never been an option.” And he smiled towards his wife who was still beaming at the compliment paid to her by Remus.

“Well I must go and be assured that I will discuss this with Dumbledore before I leave to track down Harry again, and I shall let you know how it turns out.” And with a wink he added, “Now my friends, my future bride awaits me at home.”

Chapter 17 Completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeThu 26 Feb 2009, 11:12 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 18


“Narcissa we must hurry if we are to meet with Snape and our son” rasped Lucius Malfoy. “And, Snape will pay for his insolence. Four years he has kept our son from us with no word. Oh, he will pay dearly. I will rend his very heart from his chest with my bare hands I swear it.”

As he stood to wait for her to catch up to him Lucius Malfoy silently condemned her as well. “What right did she have to involve such a repulsive, slimy, parasite of a rats dung to take his son.” Lucius cursed Snape under his breath as he waited for her to catch up.

The pace that he had set was ominous from the vary moment that he had escaped from prison. She was going to watch what he would do to Snape and then he would kill her for interfering with the Dark Lord’s wishes. When Narcissa had told him what she had done to ensure their son’s life he had nearly killed her then.

Does she love him?” Lucius had wondered to himself. Her most recent visits to the prison were nothing more than Severus this, and Severus that. He had trusted him and counted him as friend until His sister-in-law came to him one night while he was still in prison. She had risked certain capture and death to tell him what Narcissa had done behind his back, and how all of a sudden everything was Severus this and Severus that. “I would not even be surprised if she had bed him Lucius. She is no sister of mine!” He remembered Belltrix saying to him that night.

Bellatrix had seemed almost sorry to have had to tell him that. He could even see the fire in her eyes as she knelt to kiss the back of his hand and then touched her forehead to where she had kissed before touching her cheek to his hand.

“Bella…,” he murmured, “you have done well to tell me these things. I shall not forget you nor your loyalty when I again am reunited with our Master.” He pulled his hand from her cheek and lifted her back to her feet. “You must flee now Bella. The Trolls may be dim but they will know that someone has entered.”

Bella kissed his hand one more time but before she left, she took his hand once again to kiss it swearing that she would see him from this abysmal place for Azkaban was no place for their Masters most trusted and most beloved to be.

As Lucius continued to wait for Narcissa who, for the past several days had been struggling to keep the pace that he set, he thought once more and bitterly as he wondered why she, his wife, one that was supposed to have loved him with all that she possessed, had done so little to aid his escape. Why did his sister-in-law, her sister no less, have to endanger her own safety to come to him to tell him these things and then risk all to provide his escape. “Curse her!” he screamed to know one but himself as he watched her fall once again. He had to fight every urge to end everything here and now but his son had to see , had to know how one deals with those that forget their station

“Lucius can we not rest for a moment?” her question was more of a plea.

“Begging to stop are we when our son awaits us?” he sneered as she slipped once again. “Get up!, and keep moving.” He snarled. “Either keep up or I shall leave you behind!.” And with that he turned and began his trek once again leaving her to scramble up the steep incline that they had to traverse alone.

Narcissa gathered herself and scrambled up the last remaining feet gasping for breath but Lucius only turned on his heel and proceeded on.. “Something has changed him.” She thought as she struggled to keep up. She knew in her own heart that Azkaban had changed him but this was something different. He hated her and she could tell. “Did he intend to punish their son?” The thought frightened her more so now than she had been before. “Was he angry that Draco failed to fully perform his task?” Narcissa knew now that she would have to form a plan to protect herself and her son but she also hoped that she would not have to put that plan into action. She cried out when she stumbled and fell to the ground but Lucius only stopped long enough to turn and with a look of scorn on his face he turned once again and trotted off leaving her where she fell. Narcissa knew then that she would indeed have to from a plan and she would perhaps have to make her move before they arrived at sanctuary.

Harry stood where he had been relaxing and delving into his memory, reeling in his last catch of the day. It was a big fish. He could tell as he pulled and reeled in the slack of the line. He had been working with this technique for the last ten minutes. Pulling back on the rod and reeling in the slack, providing slack when it seemed as if the line would break and then repeating the process all over again. He wondered if he had caught a Mountain Trout that the old man he had met sometime back when he had first entered this area told him about. He remembered that the man said that they could grow as big as fifteen pounds and would put up a fight that could tire a lad his size, and Harry’s arms were tiring. He half thought about just using magic to get this fish from the water but decided against it because he was having fun, and then he saw his prize. It was big. Nearly two feet in length as it jumped from the water and shook as if trying to shake the hook loose from its mouth.

Hedwig took notice as she had been woken by the commotion that Harry was causing while trying to land this one fish.. She took notice of the position of the Sun and knew that she had rested nearly all morning long and felt completely fresh and alert. She was thankful that he had given her this chance to rest and took delight in watching him as he moved here and there about the bank working his pole and the fish. And as she hopped towards him she hooted her encouragements to him. Hedwig had to spread her wings to balance herself as she hopped around in her glee to see Harry how she liked him most. Relaxed and happy with himself, and having fun.

She hooted again as the fish flopped it self out of the water in its struggle to free itself and Harry shouted back to her “No you won’t catch it in the air. You just want it for yourself.” He turned to grin at her when the pole pulled at him again. “Whoops!” Harry exclaimed. “Almost lost it,” and he turned to redouble his efforts.

Though it seemed to have taken another twenty more minutes, it really was only five before Harry finally brought his trout up on land and Harry grabbed it quickly and tossed it further up the bank and sat down breathing hard but satisfied with his accomplishment. He would need to rest a few moments before gathering up his catch.

As he sat down Hedwig worked her way up to admire the fish that was still flopping around limply and had to hop out of its way several times and even once had to grab it with her claws and Harry laughingly scolded her by saying “Hey you, look but don’t touch.”

After a few moments Harry rose and made his way to the lakes edge to retrieve his earlier catches and then walked back to where he threw his big catch. Tracing his line up with his hand he lifted his trout from the ground and with his other hand he thread his prize onto the line that held the rest. Once firmly secured to his catch line he set about to remove the hook working diligently with the hook so as not to injure himself he removed the hook from its mouth and began to reel in the remaining line that was still played out when he froze solid and his senses seared to full alertness.

Dropping quickly to the ground he looked to Hedwig and hissed “Search.”

Hedwig took wing immediately and circled high overhead working her circles wider and wider until she saw what she was looking for and then dipped her wings and sped back to Harry. She hooted to let him know of her presence, he had not moved one inch since she had left. Hedwig landed near him and gave her report letting him know that there was a man at least two hours walking distance from them. Harry knew that that man possessed magic because what he had sensed was that of apparation. Quickly he gathered up his equipment and ensured that any and all markings of their mornings industry were obliviated, he apparated back to his own campsite putting distance between him and whomever it was that had apparated into this area. He sent Hedwig back to keep and eye on this person and to see if she could make a positive identification of him as well.

Remus awoke that morning showered and shaved himself. While he was dressing he heard a familiar voice coming from his living room so he went to see. Tonks' head was sitting in his fireplace waiting until he appeared.

“Ah my love, are you decent?”

"She sounds very cheery this morning," he thought to himself and he replied “Yes I am.”

“Well then I’m coming in,” and with that, the rest of her body appeared in the fire and then she stepped on through and into the living room.

Once Tonks was completely inside the room she embraced Remus and then kissed him soundly on the lips.

“And where are you about today?” she asked.

"I need to visit Hogwarts to speak to Dumbledore and then I’m going to set out to speak to Harry if I can find him.”

“So soon? You’ve only just returned.” Tonks was frowning now. She wanted him all to herself today.

“I shan’t be too long my love. I know where he is now and it will only take long enough to search out where he is camped. I know that I was very near him just a few days earlier and the area is rugged so he cannot have traveled to much further.”

Tonks wasn’t really listening much beyond what he had just said to her. It was the first time that he had called her his love and she wanted to relish those words and allow them to work their own magic through her.She broke from her trance and quickly stepped into his kitchen, “You’ll be wanting a good breakfast then.” She said airily, and busied herself fixing him a breakfast full of eggs, bacon, biscuits, and coffee.

As she served him his breakfast she sat at the table and asked what he wanted to discuss with Dumbledore. As Remus spoke she listened with fascination as he told her of what Hermione had discussed with him the night before.

“’ere now let me understand this,” she said. “Harry is both descendant of Slytherin and Gryffindor?”

Remus looked up from his breakfast and said “Yes, I have to agree with that marvelous young lady. It makes all the sense in the world when she put forth her theory and she even forced myself to think back to when James and I were kids and caused me to examine why Albus seemed so interested in James and Lily and especially interested when they married. Of course we were all delighted but he seemed…, well he seemed as if all that he could have hoped for had come true. I never gave it any thought until..., She is the most brilliant witch.” Remus grinned when he thought of Hermione and it never ceased to amaze him just how intelligent she was.

“And so you’ll be asking Dumbledore about this then?”

“Of course.”

Remus laid down his fork and took her hands into his and said, "I believe that Harry may have figured this out on his own and that is why he left. If it is true, then it may be that he has taken it upon himself to finish what Dumbledore had hoped for which was to end this bloody nonsense of purity and hatred. I believe that Harry has set himself about to find the last remaining that holds out for separation. Ron and Hermione both believe that it may be possible that Grindelwald may not have been destroyed and that he may have been the one that Voldemort was taking his orders from. If this is so my dear…, then Harry may indeed need our help.”

“But if he was defeated…,” Tonks began.

Remus knew what she was about to ask so he quickly added, “That is the problem my love. We don’t know if he was destroyed or just defeated. It could be that he was only temporarily detained, hindered…, I just don’t know, could be that while he was out of circuit, Voldemort took matters in his own hand.”

Tonks wasn’t frightened by what he was saying but the look on her face spoke her concerns for her,

“That is why I need to get some clear answers from Albus…, and I know that he has asked to have Portraits made so that he may participate in our meeting so I fear that he may only have entrapped Grindelwald and he is now escaped.”

He had finished breakfasting and stood. “I shan’t be home for sometime as I am leaving directly from Dumbledore’s, to seek out Harry. I know where abouts he is, but it may take some doing to locate him directly and then I will need to speak with him also. Hopefully I will only be gone less than a week this time around.” And he kissed Tonks fervently and left her where she stood.

Tonks worried for him because she knew of the burden that Sirius had placed on him and she knew that He would have taken that burden upon himself even if he had not been given it and that was one of the reasons why she fell in love with him in the first place. But still, she did worry but she was not afraid. Tonks turned to clean the dishes that were left on the table. As she did so, she desperately hoped that this would be the one last and final time when women, wives, and mothers would have to fear for their families, their loved ones…, their children. Tonks knew that Remus would not stop until Harry was finally finished. .

“Lucius, Please my love stop, I need to rest.” Narcissa was at the end of her strength and could no longer keep up.

As Lucius Malfoy turned he watched as Narcissa sank to her knees exhausted. She was breathing in short and shallow breaths and her face had turned profusely red with the exertion of already spent energy. Her heart was pounding now as if it where trying to break free from her chest. She was in great pain. As she struggled to raise her head at the sounds of his returning to her side, she smiled to herself knowing that he did care for her and then her energy quit and she slumped completely to the ground..

Lucius took great strides to return to her side and he knelt beside her. She felt his hand upon her hair and then the shock hit her. Lucius snatched her by the hair and jerked her head up to meet his eyes. “Get on your feet woman or die.”

Narcissa looked with horror as his wand was poised just inches from her face. Summoning what energy she had Narcissa made it to her feet and Lucius again turned on his heel. He had taken no more than four steps when he heard her fall again to the ground and with out warning he turned “Avada Kedavra.

Narcissa Malfoy had taken her last breath just two miles away from the son she had not seen in four years.

Chapter 18 Completed

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeThu 26 Feb 2009, 11:16 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 19

Hedwig's Find

Harry appeared at his campsite and unloaded his catch of fish and then set about cleaning them while Hedwig fluttered about fidgeting and fretting. Harry looked at her nonchalantly and then said to her, “Look if you need to go look again then go, ok? I know your not going to stop fretting about the place until your satisfied.”

Hedwig held her doleful look and she did want to get a closer look at who that wizard was, but she did not want to leave Harry alone either and she expressed that difficulty. Harry was too near his goal and she needed to there with him to make sure that he could do what he needed to so he could finally stop and just be Harry. Just Harry.

He listened to her and he understood her reservations and for the first time in a long time he finally felt something warm in his heart. Hedwig wasn’t just his friend; he realized that he needed her as much as she needed him.

“Look you go ahead and get a closer look and then come straight back and after lunch we’ll both go and see who it is.” He had to re-assure her that he would be ok for thirty minutes by himself and if she behaved, he might be willing to skin her rabbit for her too.

Hedwig was about to leave when he motioned her to stop. For the second time today he felt another use of magic and this one was much closer and he could feel the evil in this one. Quickly he smothered his fire and pointed in the direction he felt it coming from he told her to search. Hedwig took off immediately because somehow she felt she knew this magic that was used. She didn’t know why or how, she just knew what it was the same time Harry knew; and this was more serious than finding out who the stranger was. As she flew nearer she began to have trepidations about what she would find. Something about this magic was all too familiar to her and it was bad.

Flying low over the treetops Hedwig was moving in and out of gullies and she was noting possible trails that Harry could take as well as keeping her sharp eyes roving and looking. In the back of her mind she appreciated this area. There was a serenity about the area that had caused a change in Harry for the better. He has had a smile on his face nearly every single day since they arrived in this area and had said several times that he could live here and she felt the same.

Veering to the left she saw a steep incline that had all of the appearance of something that may have slipped down on it recently, so she angled to fly much closer towards that spot. Seeing no one around, Hedwig landed to get a much closer look of the area, and that was when she noticed the two sets of foot prints and someone who had obviously fallen or slid down the embankment. She took to wing once again and started to follow the tracks and just a short distance up the hill she found the body.

Narcissa Malfoy's body laid lifeless half way down a small slide where it had slid to its final stop. The trail was old but worn and hidden partially from view by the surrounding trees and brush of the forest that grew tall and lush in the Blue Mountains. The trail was actually an old and well used animal path that had been widened by recent human use. Regular use at that. She landed and observed the lifeless body noting that there were no obvious reasons for the ladies death but Hedwig knew the reason. She didn’t know why she knew and that bothered her too. She felt great magic in the air. It felt like an electricity that threatened to lift her feathers, it felt ugly against her body. She wanted nothing more than to leave, to get away from the wickedness around her that sullied her very soul. She felt sickened as the emotion drained her and her mind screamed at her to fly away but she couldn’t. She had to find what or who had killed this woman and so she took to wing once again and followed the trail, flitting in and out of the trees that would obscure her directness.

Minutes later she saw another man on the very same trail and he moved with a great pace in a single minded direction and he had a wand in his hand. Hedwig veered sharply and cried a loud skree that would alert Harry even from a great distance. As she did so she saw it. A black maw in the side of the mountain. She wondered if she should circle back around to take a closer look but the evilness that emanated from it was like a stench that caused her senses to reel and a churning of her stomach and she retched.

Harry heard Hedwig’s warning on the wind and quickly took his invisibility cloak and covered his tent and then hid himself in the bushes and readied himself. He had his wand out in preparation for any encounter knowing that he would not need it but also allowing anyone to think that it was his only defense. His special abilities would be held back and in abeyance lest he let a certain person know his true strength. He had been planning for this moment, had rehearsed it and revised how he would make his initial contact. Harry steeled himself for violence and waited.

Hedwig returned back to Harry but surveyed the campsite before landing. She saw nothing, heard nothing and then allowed the soft hoots that would call out and tell Harry that all was well. Harry stretched his senses to observe the area as if to make sure of what Hedwig was telling him and then removed himself from his cover.

“What was it?” Harry whispered.

Hedwig hooted for several moments and projected an image into Harry’s head and then another image and Harry gasped and rocked back on his heels. She had never been able to do that before. But he was even more astonished by what the images showed him. Narcissa Malfoy dead and Lucius Malfoy near a cave entrance with his wand in hand, and a look of violence on his face. Then she told him of the feeling that exuded from the mouth of the cave. Harry stretched his hand out to where he knew what he was looking for now laid, and felt the power that was coming from there but something was missing. He was not there yet. Harry’s face showed a look of worry about it mixed with confusion. Could that other man be who he was looking for? He wondered. It did not feel right, he knew that the man that he was looking for was most evil and he would know if he was there. He felt the evil, the magic that came from what he now knew to be a cave and he felt that it was weak. He also knew that person was there but thought that it was the distance that kept the evil, the magic weak to his senses. How could he be so wrong?

Hedwig saw his confusion and questioned it. Harry spoke aloud knowing that by putting voice to his doubts it would help to analyze, to hear what caused his confusion. He spotted it quickly. Who was the unknown person? And why were they here? And lastly, what was their purpose here? Harry knew that he had only to answer those questions and his course of action would show itself to him.

“Hedwig!” he said sharply, “Go find that other man and identify him now.”

She did not question or argue with him but took off immediately. As she rose, Harry retreated back into his hiding spot knowing that if Hedwig did not see him than no other could either.. She was gone only for a short time but when she returned Harry could tell that she was agitated. Searching the area before landing to ensure their aloneness, she landed and then called him out from his hiding.

Harry emerged to rapid hooting of uneasiness. The man was not identified. She had never seen him before and he strode as if he had purpose, through the woods as if he knew its path and had been there before. He looked old but sure of himself and he exhibited power and supremacy about his person but she felt no evil and yet she knew he was most evil.

Harry asked her how she knew but she could not explain. Harry thought hard about what she had told him and noted that the day had drawn late into the afternoon and they had not eaten yet. He did have a few rations left in his pack that he had saved while eating the fresh foods that he had caught along the way, so they were in no danger of going hungry this day or even the next. What he needed to do was to see things for himself but knew that he should eat first as this day may require full alertness and he had skipped breakfast.

“What we need is another with us my girl.”

Hedwig cocked her head misunderstanding what he had just said and Harry took notice so he explained.

“I had always envisioned this moment as being one on one but now there were two, possibly more. This is not what I expected. How far to the cave?”

Hedwig gave him the distance and Harry weighed that information.

“We will get closer when dark comes and then we will know exactly what we are against.”

They ate silently and rested for the rest of the day and then at twilight Harry set out leaving Hedwig to take to the air and set her watch as she saw fit. But she did not. Hedwig went in a whole other direction unnoticed by Harry.

“Remus what are you doing here?” The strident voice of Professor McGonagal questioned.

“I need a private word with Albus Minerva.”

“Very well then, you do know the way to my office and I expect that you know its password do you not?”

“I do and thank you Minerva.”

Remus gave her a small bow and directed his feet to the direction of the Head Mistresses office. Remus strode down the all to familiar hall of Hogwarts and arrived at the guardian Gargoyle who leapt to the side as he gave the password. Entering onto the rotating stair that led up to the office, Remus formed his questions in his mind. There was really only one question that needed an answer.

He entered in the office and called to the portrait of Albus Dumbledore who stirred from deep thought. “Ah, Remus.” Albus had said.

Chapter 19 Continued

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PostSubject: Re: Harry Potter and the Hunt   Harry Potter and the Hunt Icon_minitimeThu 26 Feb 2009, 11:16 pm

The Hunt

Chapter 19 continued

Hedwig's Find

“Albus I need some answers if you would, to some idle questions.”

“If I can answer them then you shall have your answers Remus. What would you ask?” Dumbledore sounded cheerily.

“Our most enterprising young lady…,”

Albus chuckled as Remus began and he said, “You do refer to our young Mrs. Weasley, Hermione?”

Remus allowed a small chuckle of his own and said “Yes I do mean her.”

And then looking serious he said “Hermione has theorized that Harry is both descendant of Slytherin and Gryffindor,” He raised a finger to prohibit Dumbledore from interrupting and continued to say, “And she further theorizes that you knew of this and had followed this union of blood quite closely in hopes that Harry could seal the breech…,”

Dumbledore did interrupt this time by adding "To seal the breech between severed ties and unity of a dying breed. Yes Remus, she is truly clever and quite correct. I am not surprised that she had figured this out.” His eyes had a gleaming brilliance and his face held a smile that hid great humor behind it. “Most ingenuous she is. Most ingenuous indeed to have thought that out.”

Remus spoke up again “We have need to know how you defeated…, what did you do with the Dark Lord Grindelwald?”

Dumbledore looked down to Remus and his manner became stern and grave.

“He has been defeated” Dumbledore said in a most even tone after a long silence.

“Yes, but I need to know what you did with him Albus. It is most important.” Remus stood looking most discernibly into the eyes of the portrait and waited. Again, silence hung long over the room.

It was Dumbledore who broke the silence as he whispered in his own defeat “I have failed haven’t I?”

“Will you not tell me what you did with him?”

“I, I cannot. I cannot relive that moment Remus, please do not ask it of me.”

“Albus we need to know. We fear that he is the one that Harry seeks, we need to know.” Remus had never seen Dumbledore so shaken.

“I found him searching an orphanage…, he was looking for a boy…, one like him. It was a long time ago. He, he had no compassion for the children…, none. He saw me coming and gathered the children about him. He, he used them as a shield to protect him and then he searched my mind and knew what I knew.”

Remus looked down at his feet as Dumbledore continued.

“I pleaded with him, begged him not to harm the children.”

A sob sounded from the portrait as Remus listened. Mustering as much compassion as he could find within himself Remus said “Albus, I need only know what it is that you did with him.”

“He forced me to watch as he tortured the children, I was powerless to stop him Remus, I was powerless.”

“Albus what did you do with him?” Remus’s voice was soft, compassionate, soothing…, understanding, and yet firm in its tone.

“I begged him to kill me instead, to leave the children; it was my fault that he could not find young Tom Riddle. I protected him as was my pledge to protect my students.” Dumbledore continued he had to absolve himself even after death he felt that need.

A soft cough in the background interrupted the two, it was Minerva. “Albus, Argus is missing and no one has seen him for several days.”

Remus’s eye’s widened as he now understood with some uncertainty and glanced back to Minerva as she looked quite concerned herself.

“Albus?” Remus murmured.

“I could not bring myself to kill him once I regained my wits. I watched him kill a sweet young girl who only wanted her mother and I cast the Cruciartis curse against him. I used this curse until he passed out and in his unconscious state I removed his magic. You see there is another use of Dragon’s blood which I have not divulged to the wizarding world, and then I used a most powerful memory charm and…, he became Argus Filch, the caretaker here at Hogwarts where I could keep an eye on him.”

“Dumbledore no!” McGonagal held a hand to her breast and she gasped in both disbelief and horror. “You would never do that to another…,"

“But I did Minerva, and it is to my discredit and my dishonor.”

Remus remained silent upon learning this. There was something that he was missing, something that he was failing to understand. Argus Filch was a squib he had no powers, this did not make sense. He turned to McGonagal with questioning eyes and she too lowered her head unable to meet his gaze and then Albus spoke again.

“Dragon’s blood is only temporary Remus and must be administered in doses. The return of the magic is not instant but it does return in time and in full effect. But I broke a great convention. I did a crime to humanity by thinking that I could control him until his natural death. Remus, he is much more powerful than I could ever be and that is why I bound him to me thus.”

Remus now understood the hatefulness of Filch’s nature and as he was thinking he said, “But you bested him Albus.”

“No, I cheated him. And that is how I beat him. I surrendered myself to him and offered up Tom Riddle. He asked for my wand still using the girl as a shield and when my spell hit him it also took the girl. I could not release the Cruciartis curse without fear of him gathering a chance..., and in doing so..., I killed her. That is my crime and in her memory, I swore an oath that no other child would befall harm in my presence again and I failed her as well.”

Minerva stood rooted in her shock. She had known Albus Dumbledore nearly her entire life. She knew his principles and even in death it amazed her that he would still carry guilt and would still punish himself. And now she feared hopelessly for Harry’s life.

“Remus you must find Harry, he must know, and he will need help.”

Remus wasn’t sure who had said what, as he turned quickly and sped down the stairs. Harry had to know what he faced and whom he faced. He reached the great doors just as a familiar looking Elf drew near to him.

“Dobby?” he shouted to get the Elf’s attention

Dobby altered his direction to face who had called out for him. “Good afternoon Mr. Remus sir.”

“Dobby I , Do you know exactly where Harry is?”

Dobby peered closely at Remus’s face for a moment and then replied “Dobby does not know where is Master Harry Potter is. Is Master Harry Potter in trouble?”

“Dobby I think so, would it be breaking your honor to tell me if you knew where he is?” Remus had phrased his question exactly right as Dobby answered him.

“If Master Harry Potter is in trouble Dobby would gladly tell his Master’s father friend where he is, but Dobby does not know sir. Dobby is not knowing.” And then Dobby pulled away saying “Dobby must get Winky, Dobby must go.” And he left as quickly as Remus could blink his eyes.

Remus had planned to go straight from the school to find Harry and speak with him but now he needed to muster a few people to let them know of the certain danger that Harry now faced and to alert others of a possible start in their common fight so he called up his Patronus and sent a message to Bill asking him to meet with him at Headquarters and to send for Hermione as well as Ron if he were not at home.

Chapter 19 Completed

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