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Chapter 2 : Bond that Forms
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"Sirius Orion Black is now declared of all charges man. He will receive a hundred thousand galleon reward for wrongful imprisonment. We hereby declare Sirius Black full custody of his godson, Harry James Potter. If you would sign the custody papers here, Mr. Black." Cornelius Fudge bitterly slid a folder across the table towards Sirius.
Sirius signed the papers quickly and slid the folder back to Fudge. Sirius turned to Remus with a huge grin on his face, as Remus returned the smile. Fudge then took the papers and signed them as well. He picked up the folder and handed it over to Dumbledore, who took it with a smile.
"Harry Potter's current guardians will have to sign this. You return it to the Ministry by post owl and he's yours. We forewarn you, Mr. Black, we will be watching you very closely. If anything happens to Harry, we will take him away from you before you can say one word about it. He is very precious to the Wizarding World." Fudge looked at Sirius coldly.
"I would never hurt my godson, Fudge, and he doesn't belong to the Wizarding World. He's a little boy, he's not somebody's property." Sirius rose from his chair.
"Sirius." Remus grabbed his friend's arm, urging him to sit down.
"Good day to you." Fudge and the two Aurors left the room.
"Bastard." Sirius muttered under his breath.
"It's good to see you haven't lost your spirit, Padfoot." Remus smiled as he stood up.
"It's good to see you're still the reasonable one, Moony." Sirius followed suit and stood up.
"Good to have you back." Remus held out his hand.
"Are you kidding me? Where I come from, we give our closest friends a great big 'ole hug." Sirius pulled Remus into a brotherly hug.
"I think that we should go collect Harry now. Shall we?" Dumbledore turned to the two Marauders as they broke their hug.
"Oh course! Let's get going. I say we Apparate, and then we can use the Floo Network with Harry." Sirius stood up, truly smiling for the first time in five years.
"Where are you two going to live?" Remus asked.
"Probably the Ancient and Most Noble House of Black." Sirius snorted slightly. "Noble, my arse."
It's been two, two long days since Harry had eaten, his uncle held true to the promise he had made. Harry would sneak into the kitchen at night and grab as many pieces of bread that he could, without anybody noticing a lot was gone. If his uncle ever found out he was doing such a thing.. Well, let's just say Harry didn't want to think about what would happen to him.
Harry was told to wash the kitchen floor, once again. The Dursleys were having some guests over, and they wanted the kitchen to be spotless, since they didn't have a dining room where they could entertain. Harry was very weak; he could barely move his arms to wash the floor. Harry knew that he had to do a good job, or they would extend his punishment of no food and would probably give him another beating.
Harry heard laughter ringing in the living room; his fat cousin, Dudley, was watching television once again. He was never allowed to watch the television, so he never really knew what exactly was so great about it. That's all Dudley seemed to do, watch the telly and eat loads of junk food, even though he didn't need the extra weight. There was a knock at the front door and then the doorbell sounded. The doorbell then kept ringing repeatedly. Harry thought that was rather strange.
"I'm coming! I'm coming!" Aunt Petunia yelled.
He heard her footsteps coming down the stairs and then the front door opening. He then heard his aunt scream at the top of her lungs, saying things such as, "Freak! It's you freaks! Get out of my house! Out of my house right this instant!" Harry wanted to know what was going on, so he crawled over towards the opening of the kitchen, peaking out into the living room.
Aunt Petunia backed up into the living room. She grabbed Dudley and pulled him close to her chest. Three men then walked into the room. One of the men was a very elderly looking man with a long, white beard, who was oddly in a dress, or so what Harry thought was a dress. Next to him were two younger men, who were also in dresses. One of them had dark brown hair that hung loosely around his face. He seemed as skinny as Harry was. The other one looked young, but he had some gray hairs showing through his sandy-coloured hair.
"Get out! Vernon! There are freaks in the house! Get out of my house!" Aunt Petunia yelled as Uncle Vernon came running down the stairs, he then made his way over to Aunt Petunia and Dudley and stood in front of them.
"What in god's name do you people want? Haven't you asked enough of us?" Uncle Vernon asked.
"Ah, Vernon Dursley, so we meet again." The man with the dark brown hair said with an evil grin playing on his face.
The man looked strangely familiar to Harry, like he's met him before. Harry felt the impulse to run into the living room and cling onto the man for his dear life, but he couldn't. The Dursleys would hate if he did that. Strangely, Harry trusted this man with his life, but he was still scared of him. He was afraid that the man would hurt him just like his uncle does.
"Who in ruddy hell are you? I've never met you before in my life!" Uncle Vernon shouted at the man.
"Sirius Black, at your service." Sirius smirked.
"You-You're his best friend, aren't you? You're that Potter boy's friend." Aunt Petunia said in disgust.
Harry's ears perked up as he heard, 'That Potter boy's friend'. She couldn't have been talking about him, since he was only six and these men were older then he was. Harry then came into realization, what if they were talking about his father? He didn't know anything about his father, not even his name.
"'That Potter boy'? Oh please, can't you call him by his name? It's James." Sirius looked at his aunt and uncle with disgust now.
"You freaks, we took in that boy because my sister just had to go and get herself killed! We don't even want him, but we took him in and now your kind comes over here. I won't have it." Aunt Petunia screeched in a high- pitched voice.
"Like she wanted to die! Like she wanted to leave her son in the likes of you!" Sirius hollered back.
"Sirius, calm down. Mrs. Dursley, my name is Albus Dumbledore and I was the one to leave young Harry on your doorstep that night. As I explained in the letter, it was dire for Harry to stay close to a blood relative of Lily's. Things have changed now, however. Sirius is Harry's godfather and wants to have full guardianship. Harry, and only Harry, will make this decision. If Harry does not want to leave, he will stay here. If Harry wants to move in with Sirius, then he may do so and you will have to sign the custody forms. Is that clear?" Dumbledore explained.
"Are you going to pay us back for all the time and money we spent on that boy?" Uncle Vernon asked.
"Like hell!" Sirius stepped forward, but Remus grabbed his arm.
"Sirius, not here. Not now."
"Fine, take the boy! We don't want him!" Aunt Petunia looked down at Dudley and fingered his hair.
"Where is Harry?" Sirius asked in a low, dangerous voice.
"He-he's.. boy! Get in here now!" Uncle Vernon yelled.
Harry sat frozen in his spot at the door. He looked at the man named Sirius in amazement. Why would he possibly want Harry to live with him? Would he be exactly like Uncle Vernon? Does he drink? Does he have a wife? A thousands questions were swarming in Harry's mind. A hand touched his forehead and he flinched back. Sirius was knelt down beside him now.
"Harry?" Sirius said with so much emotion in his voice.
"Wh-wh-who are you?" Harry asked in a small, childish voice.
"My name's Sirius Black, I knew your parents. Your dad was my best friend." Sirius smiled sadly. "Your dad named me your godfather and I.. I would love it if you'd come live with me."
"But-but you don't even know me." Harry backed up a little farther, scared of the man in front of him.
"I know that I haven't been the best godfather in the world. I know that I've let you down by not being there for you, but.. It wasn't my fault. I was thrown into jail for murders I didn't commit. I'm free now and I want to make it up to you. I'm really sorry, Harry, I really am." Sirius glanced at Harry sadly.
"Why are you sorry?" Harry looked at the man in confusion.
"Because I am. I really, truly am. Please, Harry, gimme a chance to make it up to you. If you hate living with me then you can always come back and live with your aunt and uncle. I promise, if you live with me, we'll have a blast." Sirius grinned at the small child.
Harry didn't understand why the man was being so nice to him. Why the man was offering him a home where he would have fun? He didn't understand anything that was happening. If he went with the man, would he tell him about his parents? What was his father's name again? James? Is that what Sirius had said? His middle name was James. It could be possible.
"Harry.." Sirius trailed off, snapping Harry out of his thoughts.
"O-okay. I'll live with you." Harry didn't even know why he said it; he wasn't going to say anything.
"Great." Sirius was now in a full smile.
"Is there anything that you want to pack up?" The sandy-haired man asked him.
"Harry, this is Remus Lupin, he knew your parents also." Sirius introduced him.
"N-no, there's nothing I want to take." Harry backed up towards the wall even farther.
Harry didn't know if he was making the right decision, but then again, can Sirius be any worse then Uncle Vernon? Sirius reached towards him and brushed a piece of raven coloured hair off of his glasses. As soon as Sirius felt Harry grow tense, Sirius pulled away quickly. He looked over at Remus with worried etched all over his face.
"Come on, Harry." Remus extended his hand to help Harry up, but Harry didn't take it.
"Harry, let's get you to Sirius's house." Dumbledore walked towards Harry and picked the small boy up in his arms.
Harry tensed as the Headmaster carried Harry towards the door. Sirius and Remus then closely followed behind them. Once they were outside, Dumbledore led them to an alleyway. Dumbledore turned to Sirius and Remus.
"We will Apparate there. I'll take Harry with me and you two follow." Dumbledore then disappeared with a loud pop.
Dumbledore and Harry appeared outside of a huge house that read, "Number 12, Grimmauld Place." Dumbledore looked down at Harry, who was still stiff with fear. He looked at the house in amazement. Soon there were two more pops and Sirius and Remus appeared.
"Let's get inside. I had a crew come down here and clean it up a bit. It hasn't been cleaned in a year, since your mother died." Dumbledore told Sirius.
"Oh joyous." Sirius said sarcastically as the three walked into the house.
Once inside, Dumbledore sat Harry down on the floor, and Harry backed up against the nearest wall, sinking down in a sitting position. Harry drew his knees towards his chest and slightly rocked back and forth. Sirius gave a sad smile towards Harry and walked towards him, crouching down to his level.
"Are you hungry? We could get you some food." Sirius offered a reassuring smile, but Harry didn't move, nor did he say anything.
"I'll go make some sandwiches or something." Remus offered.
Remus looked over at Harry and then walked through the living room. Remus stubbed his toe on a chair and yelped out in pain. Then that's when it all went to hell.
"FILTHY BLOOD TRAITORS! FILTHY WEREWOLVES! MY GOOD FOR NOTHING SON ALL IN THE NOBLE HOUSE OF BLACK?" a woman's voice started to scream.
Sirius and Remus ran over towards a painting with a dusty curtain flinging in the air. Sirius and Remus grabbed the curtain and tried to pull it over the painting. Harry watched in horror was the woman kept screaming, memories of Uncle Vernon's beatings flooding his mind. Harry let out a small whimper as the woman stopped screaming.
"Stupid idiots didn't get that ruddy portrait down." Sirius muttered as he made his way back over towards Harry.
"Ah, so that must be the painting with an ultimate stick charm on it." Dumbledore looked thoughtful for a moment.
"Harry, it's okay. She's just my mum, crabby old woman she is. Why don't we got with Moony to get some lunch, eh?" Sirius held out his hand for the small child.
Harry looked at the hand and then at the man, unsure of what to do. Lunch did sound very tempting to him; he was so hungry. Harry, very slowly, reached out his tiny, shaky hand and grasped the bigger one. Sirius smiled warmly as he helped Harry to his feet. The two made there way to the kitchen, Remus and Dumbledore following silently, smiling.
Once they were in the kitchen, Harry quickly pulled back his hand. Sirius bent down and placed his hands around Harry's thin waist and hoisted him up onto a stool. Harry pulled his knees to his chest, once again, and watched the man with curiosity.
"What would you like?" Sirius opened the refrigerator. "I have some.. cheese, something that looks like frozen pasties, and some butterbeer. Oh! Some chocoballs! Would you like some of that?"
Sirius pulled out a small dish that had some chocoballs, which was strawberry mousse with cream on it. Sirius sat it down on the counter and eyed it carefully. Sirius then took out his wand and summoned four plates, four forks, and a knife. He cut the mousse into four pieces, making Harry's piece slightly larger. He placed the first plate in front of Harry and then held out the others to Remus and Dumbledore.
"No, I have to get back to Hogwarts, but thank-you all the same, Sirius. I would suggest that you get some food soon. I'll see you both later. Harry, we will be seeing each other again." Dumbledore smiled and then was gone with a loud pop.
"I'll go get some food, Sirius. You two just eat that. See you soon, Harry." With that, Remus was gone also.
"That means more for us." Sirius placed Remus's piece in front of Harry.
Sirius began to eat, but Harry sat there staring at the food. Was he really allowed to eat all of this? Harry noticed Sirius staring at him, so Harry picked up the fork and ate a tiny part of the mousse. Harry's inside started to warm up. It was so good! Harry quickly loaded his fork with more.
"Good, eh? Despite how much I hated my mum, she did make a great mousse. She would put this charm on them so that they would never spoil. That was my favorite part of Christmas." Sirius smiled slightly.
"It-it's good." Harry looked up at Sirius.
"I'm glad you like it. I could make more, but I doubt that it'd taste the same."
Harry was starting to warm up with Sirius, but still not trusting him completely yet. Harry wanted to ask him a million questions, but was afraid the man would get mad and send him back to the Dursleys, so Harry kept his mouth shut. Harry went on eating as Sirius watched him curiously.
"What's wrong, Harry?" Sirius asked as the boy jumped in surprise.
"No-nothing." Harry lied.
"I would have thought that you would be full of questions. I mean.. you know nothing about me."
"I-I thought you-you'd be mad." Harry answered honestly, not looking at his godfather.
"Why would I be mad? Come on, fire away." Sirius leaned back slightly, crossing his arms, waiting for the questions to come.
"Why are you being so nice to me?" Harry looked over at him, his bright eyes pleading to be wanted.
"Because you're my godson and I love you." Sirius answered like it was the most obvious thing in the world.
"But- you don't even know me."
"Yes, I do. We were really close when your parents were alive. You know what your first word was?"
"N-no." Harry leaned forward, excited to hear about his parents.
"Daddy, except you said it to the wrong person. You called me daddy and James flipped out. Gave me a black eye, thought that I corrupted you." Sirius chuckled softly. "Your mum thought it was the cutest thing ever. She joked about it with James for weeks."
"Really?" the corners of Harry's mouth twitched, but not going up into a smile quite yet.
"Yeah, you were so cute. You did call Lily mum though. I sometimes thought that it was a sign that I should have taken seriously. When your parents died, I really did think it was a sign that I was suppose to raise you, because Lily and James wouldn't be able to." Sirius gazed off into space, in a trance.
"No, you can call me Sirius or Padfoot, either will do. I won't have my godson calling me Mister Black." Sirius snapped out of his trance and looked over at Harry.
"Padfoot?" Harry questioned.
"You dad, Remus, and I all had nick-names for each other. Mine was Padfoot, your dad's was Prongs, and Remus was Moony." Sirius explained.
"How did you come up with them?" Harry asked, warming up to Sirius even more.
"Do you believe in magic, Harry?" Sirius's eyes sparkled with mirth.
There was a knock at the door and elderly Arabella Figg ran towards the door. She opened it to see Remus Lupin standing in the doorway. Arabella smiled softly and stepped aside to let the young, twenty-four year old wizard into his house. She closed the door and turned to face him.
"What's wrong?" Arabella asked, not sure if she wanted to hear the answer.
"Do you mind if I.." Remus trailed off.
"Wha- oh! Of course!" Arabella blushed slightly.
Remus took out his wand and tapped her on the top of the head. Soon the features of an old lady disappeared, revealing a beautiful, young woman. She was tall and thin. She had curly, black hair the reached her elbows. She had warm, chocolate-brown eyes. She had a very nice, golden tan. The girl was only twenty-three years old.
"I think you've heard." Remus began and Arabella's face grew dark.
"Of course I've heard." Arabella snapped. "I've just been trying to gain custody of my godson for four years now, but Sirius Black comes back and gets the custody of him just like that." Arabella pursed her lips in distaste.
"You know why Dumbledore said you couldn't raise Harry." Remus reminded her.
"Yeah, because I can't bloody do that much magic. So what, both of my parents were Squibs. I'm not one." Arabella said bitterly as she crossed her arms over her chest.
"You can't perform a lot of simple spells, Bella. I-I just thought that you'd like to know that they're staying at the Grimmauld Place, in case you wanted to go see Harry."
"Thanks, Remus." Arabella sighed and turned to look out the window.
"He's traumatized, you know." Remus commented as he stepped up beside Arabella.
"Who wouldn't be after living with them?"
"Sirius is trying to change that. I think he'd love your help. Harry could use a mother figure."
"I've wanted to be that mother figure for Harry.. For Lily, but I'm bloody not allowed." Arabella's deep eyes filled with tears.
"Lily wouldn't blame you, you know that." Remus placed a comforting hand on her shoulder.
"You don't know what they'll like. You didn't go to their house the summer before our seventh year." Arabella shrugged the arm off her shoulder.
"Sirius talked briefly about it." Remus didn't really want to hear the story.
"She was locked up in a room, bars on the windows, several locks on the door. She was horribly pale and deathly thin. She could barely walk. Her eyes looked dull, like she had an awful illness. James charmed the bars off and we went in. Lily grabbed onto James, like she was pleading for him to take her away, far away from the Dursleys. She then wrapped her arms around him in exhaustion and she cried. Told us where her stuff was and Sirius and I retrieved it. We come back and Lily was asleep on the bed. James picked her up and steadied her on his broom so that she wouldn't fall off. They were horrible, Remus. I went home and cried my eyes out, the things she said they did to her. She only told me, because I was her best friend and she could trust me. I told all of that to Dumbledore when he sent Harry to those so-called people. He said they wouldn't hurt a little boy, let along their own nephew. He sent me here to watch over the house, but I guess I've been doing a terrible job if he's traumatized, eh?" Arabella blinked back the tears that were burning her eyes.
"The wards on the house didn't detect muggle abuse towards Harry. You couldn't have known about it. Nobody knew, Bella."
"I should have known. I should have stopped them" Arabella whispered softly, her voice cracking.
"I need to go get some food to stock up the house. There's nothing to eat in that house. Come by soon, I'm sure they would both love to see you." Remus smiled sadly.
"Can you leave me like this? I-I don't want to go back to old crabby Mrs. Figg."
"No problem." Remus then headed towards the door.
Harry and Sirius finished eating, after Sirius sharing many stories about Lily and James. Harry seemed to be getting more and more comfortable with Sirius, although he still wouldn't let Sirius get too near him. Sirius had suggested that they get some sleep and Harry agreed, he was feeling rather sleepy. Sirius offered his hand so that he could lead Harry through the house, and Harry took it reluctantly.
Sirius led Harry through the huge Black Manor, stopping outside a door on the second floor. Sirius pushed the door opened and looked at the clean bedroom. Sirius led Harry over to the bed and let go of the small boy's frail hand. Sirius pulled back the sheets and then knelt down in front of Harry.
"I'll be right across the hall if you need anything. You can get up and get me any time during the night, okay?" Sirius told Harry.
"Okay." Harry replied, biting his bottom lip.
Sirius smiled and made a motion to ruffle the boy's hair, but stopped himself. He wanted Harry to trust him completely first and the one thing Sirius noticed about Harry was that he didn't like to be touched. Sirius reached out and picked the child up, placing him on the soft, comfy bed. Harry looked down at the bed in confusion.
"Tomorrow we'll get you some new clothes, some pajamas. Right now, you'll just have to sleep in that, if that's okay. What are you waiting for? Get under those covers."
Harry slipped his legs under the covers and laid down. Harry felt his body warm up to this strange surrounding. Harry sank into the covers, taking complete advantage of them. He was beginning to like Sirius more and more every minute.
"You go to bed, okay? Good-night, Harry." Sirius smiled down at him and made his way towards the door.
"'Ni-night.. Padfoot." Harry said in a whisper.
Sirius turned around to look at the boy as Harry closed his eyes and clenched the warm blankets towards him. Sirius smiled again; maybe Harry will trust him completely sometime soon. Sirius pulled the door closed; only leaving it opened a crack, so that Harry could easily get out of the room if he wanted to.
An old looking house elf made his way towards Sirius, jumping back slightly as he saw him. Sirius groaned slightly at the sight of Kreacher. He pointed at Harry's door and glared down at the house elf in great dislike.
"This room is off limits at all times. You are not allowed to go near Harry. Do you understand me? That is an order." Sirius said sternly.
"Of course, Master." Kreacher then lowered his voice. "Stupid murdering traitor. Mistress would not be happy if she found Kreacher was serving her good for nothing son."
"Shut-up or I just might decapitate you right now and throw it in the trash."
"Blood-traitor." Kreacher muttered was he walked off.
"Ponce." Sirius hissed back.
End of chapter two
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