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Chapter 12: Ownership
True to her word Fleur had made arrangements with the head of Gringotts. Hermione, Ron, and Kingsley used a floo which appeared in the special room to travel to the Bank. Kreacher was waiting with Griphook who had been promoted to Assistant Manager. "Hello. Shall we begin?" he said gruffly leading them into a small windowless room.
"Good Morning Griphook. Are you feeling better after what happened?" Hermione asked in her kindest manner. Plus she wanted to remind him he was alive because of their actions.
"Griphook was doing better. I had received a promotion for returning with the Sword of Gryffindor but when it disappeared I was demoted" he angrily replied.
"We are very sorry to hear that. Never the less we are grateful for the way you and your people helped in the defeat of Voldemort, as well as yours also Kreacher" Ron told them.
"Kingsley Griphook's help was instrumental. We want to sit with both you and Minerva when Harry is up to it" Hermione added.
"Speaking of Harry Potter why is he not here?" Griphook angrily demanded.
"His healers have not OK'ed him for travel yet. Griphook you saw him when you stayed at my home. All three were exhausted as you were" Fleur explained.
"And I do not see Miss Weasley. We have nothing to discuss either if she not here" Griphook responded, getting up and storming out.
"The Goblins see things differently as we do" Kreacher said after the door closed. "I will return with her momentarily." He returned less than a minute later with a very miffed Ginny.
"Kingsley it's a good thing Neville was there too or I would have told the Goblins what they can do with their Bank" she replied as she plopped down next to Ron. Fleur left and was followed back in by Griphook and another Goblin who wheeled in a table with a tea set and cookies. Wordlessly he left.
Griphook now looked more apprehensive than angry. He could literally see the steam rising off Ginny as she sat there with both hands clenched on her wand trying very hard not to hex him. "Miss Weasley thank you for coming. It is because of your relationship with Mr. Potter that we needed you here. I am sorry for the inconvenience."
Ginny thought she heard Ron's jaw hit the table he was so surprised. The Goblins were never civil with the Witches and Wizards. They were barely on speaking terms.
"Thank you Griphook for that. As you can see Ginny is very concerned for Harry and wishes to return as soon as possible. We all do" Hermione replied with a small smile crossing her face. 'This can't be what I think it is?' she thought, barely keeping herself from jumping up and hugging Ginny.
"I understand Miss Granger. I believe you were trying to tell me how I helped" Griphook responded, now much kinder.
"Yes. Ginny we had just escaped Malfoy Manor. Dobby died and we buried him on a hill overlooking the sea. Hermione and Griphook had been tortured by Bellatrix for information about her vault. That told us we had to go there as quickly as possible" Ron said.
"Once we had a plan and were strong enough the three of us and Griphook went to Gringotts. I had Bellatrix's wand so I impersonated her. We went down into the vault and managed to enter. The burns you saw on us were caused by curses in the vault. We came directly to Hogwarts and the Battle started. Kingsley" Hermione said turning now to him "I know I can trust Griphook to keep these things we did quiet, but we need to make a public statement of some kind. I suspect you have been inundated by requests from reporters."
"Miss Granger I have. What do you think we should say?" Kingsley wondered, trying very hard not to smile himself. Obviously much more had happened or the Goblins would not be screaming mad.
"Just what my girlfriend said. Griphook on behalf of the Goblins understood the importance of the mission we were on. Behind the scenes they helped us and deserve credit for it" Ron replied as he put his arm around Hermione.
"And don't forget the House Elves" Ginny chimed in. Like Kingsley it was apparent much more occurred.
"If you could do that we would be very grateful" a much happier Griphook answered. No mention was made of how he had betrayed them, or about the dragon imprisoned.
"Some reporters are saying people saw a dragon escape" Kingsley commented.
"I don't remember anything about a dragon. Do you Ron?" Hermione asked as she snuggled up closer to him.
"Sorry" he replied much to Griphook's relief.
"Thank you. Now there is another matter. The sword you left with me. Are you aware it disappeared?" Griphook asked, attempting not to get mad again. "My superiors were quite upset when that took place."
"I suspect they are. Does it have anything to do with a question of ownership?" Ron asked.
"Indeed it does Mr. Weasley. A thousand years ago we Goblins made this for Godric Gryffindor. Obviously he is long since passed, so the rights to it return to us" he smugly answered.
"It might not be that easy" Ginny said. "In my first year I was possessed by Dark Magic. I was near death when the sword appeared for Harry who slew the basilisk in the Chamber of Secrets, saving both my life and ending Tom Riddle's hope at the time to return to life." She shuddered at the memories this brought up, including seeing Harry's life leaving him until Fawkes intervened.
Hermione pulled out her beaded bag and withdrew a sword from it. "Here is the replica which had been made. The workmanship is incredible, all the details your people placed on it. When you were holding it did you look at the opposite side?" She flipped the blade over, opposite where Godric Gryffindor's name was. Runes were there which she translated. "This was a spell cast by Godric Gryffindor once he received the sword. It says: In time of need this will appear to a true son of Gryffindor. This is why it came both for Harry and for Neville when he needed it."
"At the time Harry and I were puzzled. The Headmaster had told him what this said, and we wondered if it had a double meaning. But there was no way to prove it" Ron replied.
"Prove what?" Ginny wondered herself, getting lost in the conversation.
"That Harry is a true son of Gryffindor. Or more specifically a descendant of Godric Gryffindor. In which case Neville must be too" Hermione stated.
"Miss Weasley by this appearing for them proves to us Goblins Mr. Potter and Mr. Longbottom are directly descended from one of the Founders of Hogwarts" responded Griphook. He looked wryly at the sword, admiring it for what he thought was for the last time.
"Griphook for now why not keep it on display here in the Lobby? Everyone who comes in will see it showing the skills your people have. It might also remind them about the War in years to come" Fleur recommended.
"Mrs. Weasley that is an excellent suggestion! I will pass it on to my superiors" replied Griphook. "Lastly we need to discuss the matter of Mr. Potter's vaults."
"Vaults? What do you mean vaults?" Ron wondered. He had accompanied Harry years ago on a trip to his vault. Harry tried to stand blocking Ron's view of its contents, knowing how sensitive Ron and the rest of the Weasleys were about money.
"Miss Weasley owing to your ... relationship ... with Mr. Potter that is why we insisted on your being here. As soon as possible there are papers he needs to sign regarding them" Griphook asked as he slid a stack towards her.
Ginny was puzzled. Yes she was Harry's girlfriend. It's not like they were married or even engaged. "Griphook I would be glad to take these to Harry. Unfortunately I cannot promise you when I can return with them."
"Not to worry Miss Weasley. By accepting custody of these you have agreed to keep the accounts outstanding" Griphook replied as he smiled.
"And what would have happened if she had not?" Hermione asked.
"Mr. Potter had turned 17 or reached the age of maturity. If he did nothing by the age of 18 he risked losing them. Additionally if anything happen to Mr. Potter the contents of his vaults would become the property of Gringotts" the Goblin replied. "These vaults have not been used in quite some time. Can we please contact you once we finish inventorying the contents?"
"Please. I will notify Harry today. I'm sure as soon as he can he will wish to inspect them himself" Ginny replied, wondering what else could be in there. Each summer they went to Gringotts to get money before school shopping. Very little was there, but her Mother had learned to make the most of it. She heard Kingsley thank Griphook for his time and Fleur hug her.
"Ginny before we say anything we need to research this. Then we can surprise Harry, Neville, and Hannah" Hermione said before they entered the floo.
Ginny's head was spinning before she even left Gringotts. Harry had Vaults. 'I'm sure he doesn't know about them' she guessed as she returned to the special room. Hannah and Neville reported things were fine with Harry.
"Ginny he seemed to know me! I didn't have the problems Hannah had" Neville stated referring to Hannah's touch being rejected by Harry some days earlier.
It was difficult for Ginny not to mention anything specific about the meeting other than Harry had papers to sign. "I will too when I turn 18" Neville commented.
"When is that?" Hannah asked not knowing when his Birthday was.
"On July 30th, the day before Harry's" he answered.
"Neville that's one day after mine" Hannah joyfully replied as she hugged him.
"Then we can have a bigger Party than usual. Our four Birthdays get celebrated together. You two are welcome to join us" Ginny replied.
"How about at our house this time?" Hannah asked.
"If Harry is up to it" Ginny ended with, looking down at him. His smile seemed bigger than yesterday as he held her hand.
"Mistress Weasley can you please tell Kreacher when Master Weasley and Mistress Granger return?" With a 'pop' he left, smiling all the way.