Chapter 9 : Chapter 8
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“Would Harry Potter like some coffee, sir?” Dobby asked.
“I’ll get it, thanks Dobby,” Harry told him through a stifled yawn. Harry got a cup and filled it with coffee; he could feel himself being watched. Turning around, he saw his father watching him intently. When Harry finished pouring the coffee he walked into the dining room and sat down at the table. He pulled his O.W.L. letter back out - he needed to decide which class he was going to take. He had to decide between Herbology and Care of Magical Creatures. He flattened out the letter, and taking a sip of coffee, he hoped the dark brew would stimulate him enough so he could make a decision about the class.
“Dreadful! How is that possible? I would understand that coming from Divination, but History of Magic?” his father’s deep voice said from behind him.
“I feel asleep during the exam.” Harry took another drink and waited for the assault he was expecting to come flooding from his father. No one had ever asked him about his grades, other than Hermione. She had been the only one who cared what he made in school. The Dursleys never asked, they did not even want to know. Even going when he attended the Muggle school, they never cared about his grades. So to him, it wasn’t a matter of not trying hard enough. Why try when no one really wanted to know?
“You fell asleep. How many times have you been told these exams affect your future?” The deep growl that filled his voice sent a shiver up Harry’s spine. That day seemed like an eternity ago. It had started off with what happened the night before, with Hagrid and McGonagall, and it just rolled over. He hadn’t been sleeping well, he was still dreaming about the Department of Mysteries.
“We’ve been told numerous times, but it wasn’t like it was my fault. I hadn’t been sleeping well. In case you’ve forgotten I had Voldemort in my head.” Harry didn’t bother with suppressing the anger that had been building inside of him.
“Poor in Astronomy. Do you have an excuse for that one too?” Harry took a drink of the coffee.
“That was the night they tried to take Hagrid away, and McGonagall had curses thrown at her. He’s my friend, did you think I wasn’t going to watch what was happening to him?”
“Divination I can understand you failing. No one expects anyone to pass that class. Astronomy isn’t a bad thing to learn, you should have tried harder to pay attention to your test instead of watching something that didn’t concern you. I know Hagrid is your friend, but you’re forgetting that Hagrid is an adult, and knows how to look after himself. If you would have tried learning Occlumency instead of fighting with me about it, you wouldn’t have been asleep in class, and would have passed that exam.”
Harry saw his father sit at the table and he pull the O.W.L. letter towards himself. Harry did not say anything; that was really the first time anyone had said anything to him about his grades (other than Hermione, of course, who kept telling him to try harder the next time).
“Have you decided on the classes you’re going to take?”
As much as I like Hagrid, Harry thought to himself, Herbology would really be the one to help keep my grades up in potions. If I want to become an Auror, I’m going to need all the help I can get in to do that. That means I have to pass potions.
Harry looked over to his father who was studying him.
“I’m taking Herbology.” He saw his father’s eyebrow raise.
“I like Hagrid, but I’ll need Herbology to pass your class.” Harry drank the last of the coffee in his cup, and went to go refill it. Snape had yet to say anything else to him. When he sat back down, Snape slid the letter back in front of him.
“That’s the second intelligent decision you’ve made.”
“What’s the first?” Harry asked.
“Asking me to teach you Defense Against the Dark Arts.” When they heard voices nearing the dining room, his father stood up and walked out. Ron and Hermione walked in while Winky set food out on the table.
“Well?” Hermione asked.
“Well what?” Harry inquired. Ron groaned
“Come on Harry. Tell us? I know Snape is a git and all, but what’s it feel like being his son?”
“Ron! That’s cruel!” Hermione admonished him. Harry loaded up his plate with bacon, eggs, and toast that Winky had set on the table. “I just found out last night, I don’t think the shock has worn off.”
“But Snape, of all people.” Harry glared at Ron.
“At least I have a father now, it’s not like I’m alone anymore Ron. You don’t know what it feels like. The Dursleys never cared about what I did, just as long as no one found out I was a wizard. I never had anyone until Sirius, and I don’t have him anymore. Believe it or not Ron, I’ll take Snape as my father. It’s better having him than no one at all.” Harry stabbed the eggs and started eating. He saw Hermione glaring at Ron. If anybody could partially understand what he felt like, it would be Hermione. The room had gone to a deadly silence. Remus walked in, took one look at the three, and walked back out. Harry had noticed that Professor Lupin didn’t look so well. Frost walked by and went straight into the kitchen. Ron looked at Harry.
“Harry, I’m sorry. I wasn’t thinking.” Frost came back out of the kitchen with coffee in tow, looking back and forth at all of them, and then walked out of the dining room.
“We’ve always had a family, Ron. Did you ever think how Harry feels, not having one? Personally I think its great. Now Harry has someone, and you heard Professor Snape last night, he doesn’t regret having Harry. And look at Harry! For someone who grew up the way he has, you would think Harry wouldn’t care, wouldn’t know how to love, but he cares more than anyone I’ve ever seen.” Hermione looked over at Harry. “I don’t feel like eating anymore. I’ll talk to you later Harry.” Harry watched as Hermione stood up and walked out of the room.
“I’m sorry, I really am.”
“No one can know Ron, because it’s not just my life we’re talking about here.” Harry looked over at Ron. It was not a glare, but the look was filled with dead certainty. “I don’t want to think about what would happen if someone found out who my father is. If you can’t deal with this, I need to know now? This is not like the last two years; you have nothing to be jealous over.”
“I can handle it. And Harry, I won’t tell anyone.” Ron got up and walked out. Harry was twirling his eggs around with his fork when Frost came back in and sat down at the table in front of him. Harry liked the fact that she hadn’t said anything; and he appreciated her leaving him alone with his friends. Frost put some food on a clean plate and started eating, looking up at him every now and then. Harry studied her. He liked the silver hair, and this was the first time he really had a good look at her. Remus, Pallador, and Snape came back in. Snape sat where he had earlier, on Harry’s left at the head of the table. All of them listened for a while as Frost and Pallador started talking.
“What language is he speaking?” Harry asked.
“Italian,” Frost told him. Pallador got up and left the room after he finished eating. Harry was still just playing with his eggs. He finally put the fork down and pushed the plate away from himself, and he watched as the leftover food disappeared off of it.
“Are we going to be able to go to Diagon Alley?” Harry looked at each of the adults in turn.
“Actually, that’s a good idea. I need to pick up some robes, and get Pallador up to date on his clothing.”
“And what happens if someone notices who you are?” Remus asked her. Harry saw his father look over the table at Remus.
“We can change her hair color, and she won’t be noticed, Remus. I have to pick up some things myself. Frost is right. Pallador needs clothing, he can’t go around dressed the way he is.”
“He’s my size, I have some clothes that will fit him,” Harry said, standing up.
“Go dress him then,” Frost said. She gulped down some coffee.
When Harry, Ron, Hermione, and Pallador came back in the living room, Frost was sporting blonde hair just short of her shoulders. Hermione walked around her.
“Needs to be longer, at least as long as before, and maybe a little darker too.” Frost turned to her.
“I’m not trying to win some beauty contest here. This is just so we can go to Diagon Alley.”
“Do you really want to teach with your hair looking like that for the next year? I’m just thinking, if we run into anyone from school, they’re going to want to know who you are. You are going to be Professor Frost, aren’t you? And if you get introduced that way, you’re going to have to keep your hair looking like that for the rest of the year.” Frost crossed her arms.
“Well, aren’t you a clever one!”
“So I’ve been told,” Hermione said with a mischievous smile.
Frost went to stand in front of the mirror. She started using a number of different charms to change her hair. Snape turned to look at Pallador and then performed a few quick charms on him so he wouldn’t look like an elf. Then the guys in the room sat down to watch Hermione tell Frost to do it one way, and then another, and then both of them started arguing about which way looked better. Snape holding his hands over his eyes, almost completely out of patience.
“No, that’s not right either,” Hermione said. Frost turned to Snape, becoming very frustrated.
“Fix this.” Snape stood up, pulled out his wand, and repeated some incantations.
“Done. Let’s go.” Frost turned to look in the mirror. Her hair was dark brown. It hung down to the middle of her back, and was braided, like she normally kept it. The braided cords had a silver band running through them.
“Not bad,” Hermione said. “I like the other one better though.” She stopped talking when she noticed Professor Snape shake his wand at her with a glare. Frost grabbed Hermione and spun her around.
“I’ll have to teach you the art of staying quiet when needed,” Snape snorted.
I’d like to see her work that little miracle.
Diagon Alley was crowded with students. Snape had gone straight to the Apothecary, and didn’t take a backwards glance at the group he had left. He had made sure that when they arrived they ended up at Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes. This was now one of the safest stores in Diagon Alley. There was a fireplace for the Order, and another for private use that nobody except the twins knew about. The trio lingered in the store, looking at all the new inventions the twins had come up with. George thrust a box into Harry’s hand.
“Happy birthday. We didn’t forget it, but the owl came back. We were going to send it to you at school if we couldn’t get it to you before then. Open it up later.”
“Thanks George.” Ron and Hermione both hit their foreheads.
“What’s with you two?” Fred asked from behind the counter.
“Harry, I have your present back at the house. I can’t believe I forgot to give it you. I’m so sorry, Harry!” Hermione pleaded with him.
“Yeah, mate. I even have mum’s gift for you back at the house”
“Don’t worry about it. Come on. Let’s get to Gringotts so that we can go shopping.”
Frost looked over at Harry as they walked out of the shop. Pallador was right beside her. His hair was short, his pointed ears gone, and he could pass for her nephew (an idea that hit Dumbledore the night before). He had also given her a letter, and a key to the vault that she was supposed to use. Harry, Ron, and Hermione were standing in line before Frost and her newly discovered nephew. He kept looking at everything, and she wanted to slap him to make him stand still, but she fought back the urge. Remus went with the trio while Frost and Pallador went next. She handed Dumbledore’s letter Dumbledore to the Goblin. He opened the envelope and read the contents. He looked suspiciously at Frost before saying,
“Everything is in order, follow Baurach.” Frost got in the trolley cart with Pallador, who looked like he really did not want to follow a Goblin anywhere, whether it would result in money or not. Frost started talking to him to get his mind off of what was to come. She turned back and looked straight when the cart took off. Her mind started racing. She only remembered doing this once before. She had been young; it was right after Dumbledore had found her. The cart twisted and turned, racing down further and further, passing three underground lakes. She had forgotten about the lakes. Pallador looked green, and Frost turned him around before he lost his breakfast all over her. He vomited out the side of the cart, just before it screeched to a halt. The Goblin hopped out of the trolley cart.
“Vault 174.” Frost stepped out and left Pallador in the cart. He did not look good, and she thought better of asking him to move. She told him to stay, and that she would be right back. “Key please.”
Frost handed the key to the Goblin. He inserted it inside the small key whole, then he ran his fingers across the door to finish the unlocking of the warded vault. Memories came flooding back. Dumbledore and her. He had a box in his hands, and he looked down and told her to stay by the door. She remembered peeking inside and seeing the money, stacks of it, and books. When the door opened she saw the money and the books, like out of an unfolding memory.
“You may go in.” The Goblin bringing her back from the past.
She stepped inside, her heart racing just for a few seconds before she remembered what she was here for. Going to the coins she pulled the pouches out and started filling them while glancing about the vault. She saw the old books. She went over to investigate, they were very old. She turned some of the pages. The top one she knew about, but it was a rare edition and would be very valuable. Turning back around she caught sight of the box, the one Dumbledore had when she had come with him. She walked over to it and saw her name on it, FROST. She opened it.
Inside were small things, along with papers, which she pulled out and started reading. They were custody papers, wizarding custody papers. She read further. Dumbledore had never told her. Never told her he had custody of her, never told her that she was his ward. She kept reading. She saw the signature of the agreement for the wizarding ward. Below it, she read the paragraph.
Custody between the child and the caregiver are as such. The caregiver hereby takes full control of the child, being now as a parent. The caregiver also takes all this on willingly, and is now hereby the wizarding ward giver, and with as much has the right to give the child his name if he deems such an action to be appropriate. This child, Fuscienne Raffaella Octavia Sebastian Thomyris, is now hereby given to Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore in as much, he is now the child’s sole parent.
Frost dropped the papers. She took a few breaths to calm herself. She finished loading the gold in the pouch and took it back out. The Goblin shut the door and handed her back the key. She tried to console Pallador but found herself not being able too. She knew she had to get a grip before they were back out of Gringotts. Going back outside she saw Luicus Malfoy standing off with Remus. The Order had talked about Lucius being able to get out of Azkaban.
“I thought after they fired you two years ago that you'd have learned your lesson. Werewolves are not meant to teach!” Remus jumped on him. They were going at it like two maniacs, fist flying as they rolled around on the ground.
Merlin! When is this man going to learn? It was just an insult, he could have walked away from it.
Frost pulled out her wand out and concentrated. She performed a spell that separated the two men, who where still throwing punches at each other. She walked over to them and turned her back on Lucius. She stared intently at Remus.
“What do you think you are doing?”
“Doing what he only knows how to do,” Lucius spat at Frost’s back.
“He bloody well started it,” Remus stated.
“You are a Professor at Hogwarts with students all around you. Yet you see fit to teach them to fight like a common Muggle.” Frost could feel the magic inside her wanting to tear both men limb from limb. But it wasn’t because of them. What she had found earlier was eating at her. She turned to face Lucius. “And you are no better. I thought wizards knew how to conduct themselves in a manner that would be befitting of a wizard.”
“How did you get out of Azkaban?” Remus asked.
“I didn’t start this.” Lucius glared at Frost. “As for you werewolf, I have my ways. Azkaban can’t hold an innocent man who was cleared in front of a Wizengott court.” Frost took the magic off of Lucius, but he still glared at her. “The school council will hear about this. A werewolf who can’t control his temper! If Dumbledore thinks he’ll keep you, I’ll have to make sure there are safeguards in place.” Frost watched as Lucius Malfoy walked away, and the young blonde man with him, that she guessed could only be his son. Frost turned back to Remus.
“Do you want to make our job any harder than what it already is?”
“Release me from this spell.”
“Are you going to behave?”
“Release me now!” Frost glared at him and released him from the spell she had over him. Remus came right up in her face. “Don’t ever do that again. I can take care of myself.”
“I wasn’t concerned about you. In case you haven’t noticed, you have three children with you. You are a teacher and an example setter for them, so think before you act the next time. You could have walked away from him, and left him fuming. And now he’s taking this in front of the school council. That isn’t a good thing.”
Frost turned to Pallador and told him to come with her. She left Remus fuming. She wasn’t about to get into another fight with him; it wouldn’t help her mood any. The next four hours were spent getting everything they needed, and she headed back with Pallador and all the things they had gotten to Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes. Snape was already in the back room, sitting and reading the Daily Prophet when they walked in. Frost hadn’t said a word and she was only waiting to get back to the house so she could talk to Dumbledore about what she had found in the vault.
“Making it a habit of breaking up fights, are you?” Snape asked from behind the paper. Frost snorted. Snape pulled the paper down and raised an eyebrow. Not answering questions, she’s glaring in the fireplace. This woman is beyond anger to the point of rage. Snape looked over at Pallador who was fidgeting. It couldn’t have been him, he’s too nervous around her. Remus has never made her this angry before. Snape watched as the others came back in, all laughing. He noticed Remus step up quickly into the fireplace with the floo powder and say,
One at a time he watched as all of them went off. Even Pallador said the English words. Frost must have taught him those two today while they were out. She was still sitting and watching the fireplace glaring into it. He stood and folded the Daily Prophet, sticking it inside his robe as he looked down at Frost. As he turned and stepped inside the fireplace he gave her one last glance before saying the destination.
Frost sat for a while longer, watching the green flames die down. Taking a deep breath she resolved some more of her anger. She did not want to go to that house and tear the place apart. Grabbing some floo powder she stepped inside and said the house’s name. When she got into the living room, Dumbledore was talking with Remus and Snape. She looked around the room and realized that the kids were off in another part of the house. She stared at Dumbledore, unable to say anything at the moment.
“As far as I know, Remus, Malfoy is now insisting on this dog being in the school, and the school council has agreed on it. So I have no choice. It will come when Draco starts school,” Dumbledore told him.
“This is ludicrous. He started it.” Remus told him.
“He may very well have, but as it is, this is how it has to be.” Dumbledore turned and looked at Frost. “Did you find everything you needed, my dear?” She could feel the magic boiling inside her, feel it sliding back and forth down her fingers. She saw Dumbledore look down and then back up. “Watch your magic. What has gotten you so upset, my dear?” Frost kept glaring at him.
“A box, inside your vault.” Her voice was laced with calm, but the sparks started flying from one finger to the next. Snape moved away from Dumbledore, as did Remus.
“I have many boxes inside my vault, which one are you referring too?”
“The one with my initials on it. The one that has the wizarding custody papers. When were you going to tell me?” Dumbledore started walking closer to her.
“I have more enemies than anyone. I did not want you to become a target for their sick pleasure because you are mine.”
“So you led me to believe I had no one in my life, that I was alone the whole time.”
“You were never alone. I sent Barrac to you. He taught you how to use your elvin magic. You had me while you were at school. You were never alone, I made sure of that.”
“But you lied to me. You never told me, why didn’t you tell me?”
“It was not a lie my dear, but it was also not the full story,” Albus replied, having heard this same sentiment coming from Harry’s mouth. Frost looked at him more intently, trying to control the magic that was coursing through her body.
“What full story? What are you not telling me?”
“Your father, Phenor, happened to be one of my best friends. He brought you to me, told me about his wife, Selene. She never told him she had elvin blood. His wife wanted to teach you elemental magic. Phenor wouldn’t allow it, he knew about the curse placed on elves, placed on those who could control the elements. He begged me to take you, to hide you, and I did. I put you with a Muggle family, put wards around that home for your protection from your own mother. Phenor figured that since you were more witch than elf, the curse would bypass you if you didn’t learn any elvin elemental magic. Phenor lost contact with me, though I tried to keep him informed about you. The night you turned into the dragon, I went to find Phenor , while I sent my own nephew to clean up anything, to hide every trace of the dragon that was inside you. When I went to your parent’s house, your father was dead, your mother was gone. I saw the damage she had reeked from already changing into the dragon, and she killed her husband in the process. When I returned, my nephew told me, he had it set up so you were placed in an orphanage. I thought this would work. It didn’t, so I took you, I became your legal wizarding ward. I failed my best friend, I failed him because I could not keep his daughter from turning into the one thing we had tried so hard to fight. I started searching old books, old books about elvin magic, anything that would give me a clue as to how to help you. That was when I ran across the orbs, found out my own relative had them hidden. Hidden in this very house. I couldn’t be more pleased when I found out. That was when I told you to go treasure hunting, and you found them. I left you books about these orbs, anything that could give you an advantage to try to stop the changing. I gave you everything I could, my dear.” Frost looked at him in utter horror.
“So Harry wasn’t the first person you did this with? Wasn’t the first person you sent to live Muggles?”
“No, you were the first.” Frost turned and walked out of the room. She went out to the atrium, she didn’t want to be around anyone. Remus came outside; the sun would be setting in a couple of hours.
“Frost can you let me out of the veil? I don’t think it would be wise for me to stay in the house tonight.” Frost looked at Remus. She could see how badly he looked. He was going to be changing tonight, and for once she was glad she wouldn’t have to be around him. She understood what he was going through, she understood how he felt, but she also knew his situation wasn’t a permanent one.
She walked through the atrium, and out to the other side. Going out the door, she took out the talisman around her neck and opened the veil. She watched Remus walk through and look at her. She closed the veil before he said anything; after she did she walked back to the atrium.
This whole time she thought she was Muggle-born, she was a witch. She sat down on the bench, her favorite thinking spot. She could hear shouting in the house, Severus and Dumbledore going at it now. She didn’t want to be here, she could change into the dragon and never come back. She could stop fighting it, but she wasn’t ready, she had one chance left, she had to talk to Harry.
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