Wednesday September 16th- Right Before Lunch-Defense Against The Dark Arts Classroom
“I want a roll of parchment on the Imperius Curse and I want you to pay particular attention to its affects on its victims.” Harry told the Fourth Year Slytherins, all of whom were groaning loudly. Harry smiled at their indignation. “To be handed in on Monday. You are dismissed.” They filed out to head for lunch. Harry quickly left as well and tread the now familiar path to his living quarters. He said the password to the door, “Boo.” It creaked open and he was inundated immediately by the squeals of his children as they ran to greet him from their playroom.
“Dada!” The two small girls cried as they got hugs.
“Daddy!” Erik grinned at him after he had gotten a hug. “Nanny Mary let us paint today.”
“Really?” Harry smiled at his son. “What did you paint?”
“Boo.” Erik told him. “Come see.” He pulled Harry’s hand and took him the room that had been set aside for the children’s daily use.
“Hello Nanny Mary.” Harry said to the older woman who was holding Tyler in the rocking chair before going to the small table to admire their work. “Wow.” Harry could see the kitten’s shape in Erik’s painting but the two babies had only splashed color all over their pictures. Their small, eager faces made Harry smile. “They are great. I really like the picture of Boo. Did she sit still so you could paint her?”
Erik shook his head solemnly. “No Daddy, she didn’t want to be painted.”
Mary coughed and Harry turned to her. He could see the amusement in her eyes but her face remained firm. “Nicole actually tried to paint Boo green.” The Nanny turned to the children and raised an eyebrow. “We talked about how it is not nice to paint kittens and we are not going to try that again, right?” All three heads nodded and Harry had to turn away to hide his grin.
“Hello.” Bill said as he walked into the room with a smile on his face and over to pick up his sleepy soon. The girls had moved over to a block set and had started building.
“Hi Uncle Bill.” Erik said before turning to Harry. “Mummy is reading.”
“Is she?” Harry said and picked up his son. “Then we should go inform her that it is time for lunch.” He walked out carrying his giggling son in to the study where Ginny did homework.
Dinner That Evening:
The family meals were always held in the dining room that connected the Potter’s rooms to Bill and Tyler’s. Food was sent up in a similar fashion to the Great Hall. Mary joined them for breakfast and lunch but generally retired to eat with the other faculty spouses for dinner.
“Did you see the Daily Prophet today?” Bill asked Harry.
“I did. One of the Seventh Years handed it to me when I informed him that I had not read it.” Harry told him. “The class asked me about it in during our lesson although I truthfully had nothing to do with it.”
“I only knew about it because Colin mentioned it to me this morning in Transfiguration. I can’t believe he is actually going through with it.” Ginny said as she cut up more chicken for Nicole who was feeding the small bits to herself.
Harry thought about Davies’ position on the Death Eaters punishments and sighed. “Walking through the veil will ensure that they cannot hurt anyone else.”
“I’m surprised he’s doing it.” Bill told them before spooning rice cereal into Tyler’s open mouth. The baby had started eating solid foods a few weeks earlier and although he ate it, he did not appear to be overly fond of the bland baby food.
“I am too.” Harry agreed. He had been sure that the Minister would not follow through with the death penalty. Some of the Death Eaters on the list were Malfoy, Crabbe, Goyle, Zabini, Nott, Rosier and several other former students from Harry’s year. Dumbledore had told him that they were being sentences to death because they had the dark mark. Harry had been surprised that they had taken the mark while still in school and was horrified to learn that each had admitted to killing and torturing muggles over the holidays. The Ministry had used Veritaserum to question the suspects, which had never been done before.
“Dada.” Emily pulled his sleeve from her highchair that was next to him and he looked questioningly at her, thankful that her happy face had interrupted his morbid thoughts. “Juusse. (Juice)”
“Say please.” Harry reminded her with a grin.
“Peas.” She replied with a beautiful smile and waited patiently while he refilled her baby cup.
“Did you read the list of names?” Bill asked them.
“I did. There were about twenty of my classmates on it.” Harry tried to keep the bitterness from his voice but knew he had not managed it completely.
Bill also looked angry but he laughed when Tyler spit food out of his mouth by blowing a raspberry. “I guess it is a good thing that they won’t be able to harm our children.”
“I will whole heartedly agree to that.” Ginny said as she raised her glass.
“I love you.” Harry told Erik as he gave him a hug and kissed the top of his head.
“I love you too Daddy.” Erik said with a yawn and Harry smiled down before pulling the covers up.
“Good night.” Harry moved so Ginny could say goodnight and he moved over to the cribs. “I love you.” He hugged and kissed Emily before moving over to Nicole. “I love you too.” He kissed her cheek and she giggled before lying down. He pulled her blanket up and ruffled her hair before moving back to tuck Emily in. “Goodnight my princesses.” He said to them.
He and Ginny left the children’s room and walked into their own. “I sent Hedwig to Mum to let her know about Emily’s birthday. It falls on a Saturday this year.” Ginny told him.
“Good.” Harry pulled her on to the bed with him and he held her as they talked. “How are your classes going?”
“They are fine. I am getting all of my work and reading done during my free periods each day. If I get done early then I get to be with the kids so it’s quite the incentive to work faster.” Ginny grinned up at him before giving him a kiss. “Did you know you are in one of story books that the kids have?”
Harry was startled. “Please tell me you are joking.”
She giggled. “No, I was reading it to Erik after lunch while you were grading papers. I got the part where the hero, Harry Potter, saved everyone and…”
He interrupted her. “I don’t think I want to hear anymore. Being a hero for killing Voldemort does not sit well with me.” His face had gone pale. “Does Erik know who I am?”
“Not yet although I’m sure he will figure it out in the next year or two. I don’t think that he really knows your name or if he does he hasn’t made the connection. You are just ‘Daddy’ to him.” She kissed him. “What I don’t think you realize is that you don’t have to be Harry Potter to be his hero. You just have to be his Daddy.”
Harry felt his cheeks flush but a smile tugged at his lips. “Really?”
“Really.” She kissed him more fully. “Did you know that they have stayed in their own beds for a whole week now?”
Harry laughed. “I had noticed that. Of course Boo is hiding under our bed right now so it isn’t like we are alone.”
Ginny looked at him strangely before hanging over the side of the bed to gaze under it. “Come on Boo.” Her voice was muffled but the kitten walked out and Ginny lifted her onto the bed. “Why are you hiding?” She asked as she stroked the kitten’s fur. “I bet Nicole tried to paint you.”
Harry looked quizzically at her. “She did try to paint her green. Did Mary tell you?”
“Huh?” Ginny looked up at him but her gaze was unfocused. “Oh, no she didn’t say anything.” She laughed. “I just know my daughter and I saw that they had been painting today. Poor Boo. You are such a marvelous kitty to put up with the girls trying to paint you and Tyler pulling out all of your fur.”
Harry chuckled as he remembered Tyler ripping out a handful of the kitten’s fur and how the baby had tried to put it into his mouth. “They do make life interesting.’ He told her, referring to their kids.
“They do. I can’t imagine our lives without them.” Ginny sighed. “I’m finished with my work today. Are you done?”
“I am. What shall we do with our free time?” Harry kissed her and he heard Boo hop off the bed.
“I think we can come up with something.”
Friday September 25th- Right After Breakfast- Defense Classroom-Seventh Years:
“Morning class.” Harry smiled at the Seventh Year Gryffindors and Hufflepuffs. This class contained his wife so it was always an interesting lesson. She never let him get away with anything and she was easily the best in the year at Defense followed closely by Colin Creavey. That had surprised Harry but Colin had changed and matured since his brother’s murder two summers before. He was a quieter and more serious student but Ginny could still get him to laugh. “Pass forward your essays and we’ll begin talking about advanced shields.” He collected the stack of parchment before continuing. “Tell me some shields. Yes Ms. Rite?” He called on the Head Girl who’s hand had been raised.
“Protego.” She answered swiftly.
“Good, five points to Hufflepuff. Tell me another. Mrs. Potter?”
“Conjuring a wall.” Ginny smiled at him.
“Absolutely. That is the only way to block a killing curse, five points to Gryffindor. There are several others but I’m looking for a specific one that does not require a spell. Can someone figure it out?” Colin raised his hand. “Yes Mr. Creavey?”
Colin looked sadly at him. “Occlumency.”
Harry watched at him carefully. Something had been off with him but he had not been able to figure out what it was and Ginny was also unable to say what was wrong with him. “That is the one I was looking for. Take ten points for Gryffindor Mr. Creavey. Today we are going to discuss Occlumency and the ways that it can be used to shield your mind. What skills are needed to master Occlumency?”
Ginny spoke up. “Character and strength of mind. It is also important that the person be able to control their emotions.”
“Yes.” Harry said and the class continued its discussion on techniques for mastering Occlumency for almost an hour. “Next week we will be starting the practical…” He looked over as the door to the class opened to reveal Madam Pomfrey.
“I am sorry to interrupt Professor Potter but I need Mrs. Potter.” The Nurse informed him as she walked over to speak quietly to him. “There is a woman in labor in Hogsmeade and I just received the owl ten minutes ago.”
“Of course.” He looked over at Ginny who had packed up her things. “You have work to do.” He told her with a grin.
She came up to him and kissed his cheek before whispering. “I’ll see you later tonight. Give the kids my love.”
“I will.” He watched them leave before turning back to the class to see that they were studying him avidly. He grinned sheepishly. “I am sorry for the interruption. Ginny is a Matron in training and there is a woman in labor. She may be pulled out of classes several times this year. I hope you understand.” He saw them all nod. “Excellent. As I was saying, next Monday we will start the practical part of Occlumency. I will try to break into your mind and you will try to stop me. Work on the mediation exercises we discussed and clearing your mind while imagining that there is nothing to find in your brain. After that we will proceed to planting false images in your mind to deceive someone who is using Legilimency on you. Please read the chapter on Occlumency this weekend and write two rolls of parchment summarizing what you have learned. Class dismissed.” Harry packed up his papers and listened to the class leave. He looked up and was surprised to see that Colin was standing in front of him with an anxious expression on his face. “What’s wrong Colin?” Harry always dropped the formality when they weren’t in class. Colin was often in their rooms and he was a favorite playmate for his children.
His face was pale and he took a deep breath before he spoke. “Do you think you could try Legilimency on me right now?”
“I have another class here in twenty minutes.” Harry began but Colin went on quickly.
“Please Harry.” He was looking sick. “I need to know.”
Harry was extremely confused. “All right then. Are you ready?” Colin nodded so Harry pulled out his wand. “Legilimens!” He tried to penetrate Colin’s mind but his mental block rivaled even Snape’s who was a master at Occlumency. He lifted his wand and looked at the now composed young man. “I got nothing and I have to tell you that is amazing.”
Colin nodded in relief and gave him a small smile. “I just had to know. I have been practicing that for almost six months.”
“Why?” Harry asked him incredulously but the door opened and the First Year Ravenclaws started to file in. He looked at Colin before speaking quietly. “Do you want to talk about it?” Colin shook his head and Harry sighed, knowing he could not force him to talk. “Well… remember that Emily’s birthday is tomorrow.”
“I remember.” He replied before walking out of the room.
Harry tried to sort through his tangled thoughts. He didn’t know what could be wrong with Colin but he hoped that he would ask for help if he needed it. When the class was seated he gave them a reassuring smile and began the lesson.
Potter’s Rooms Before Lunch:
“Mummy is helping a baby to be born.” Harry told a concerned Erik. This was only the second time Ginny had gone out on a birth since they had adopted the children but the last time had been a night birth so the kids had slept through most of it. He pulled his crying son into his arms. “It’s alright Erik, she’ll be back.”
Erik sniffed. “When?”
“I don’t know.” Harry replied honestly. The kids, particularly Erik, were sensitive about he and Ginny leaving them for longer than the few hours that they went to class. He ran his hand up and down the boy’s back, trying to comfort him. “I know you miss her but I don’t have any more classes today so I am going to spend the whole afternoon with you guys.”
“Really?” Erik wiped the tears from his cheeks and looked hopeful. “Can we play with the dragons?” He asked his father referring to the several stuffed dragons that the Hagrid had given them last week.
“Absolutely.” Harry reassured him. He looked up as Nicole and Emily came toddling over. “Hello princesses.”
“Dada!” Nicole giggled and then hugged him tight, a finger firmly in her mouth.
Emily moved over to him and he put his other arm around her. “Boo keeee.” She looked at him seriously.
“What happened to the kitty?”
“No keeee.” Emily informed him and Harry looked at his son for a clue as to what she might be trying to tell him.
“We can’t find her, Daddy.” Erik said.
“I think we should try to locate her then.” Harry kissed her cheek and then Nicole’s. “Then after lunch we’ll play with the dragons. How does that sound?”
Nicole giggled and took her wet finger from her mouth to put it on his glasses. “Dada.”
“You didn’t try to paint her green again, did you?” He asked her and tried not to laugh. It was so difficult in these situations to keep a straight face. She needed to learn right from wrong but it was hard not to bust up laughing when the kids did something like that. That poor kitten tolerated so much from all of the children. Emily was the best with her and Ginny has still caught her trying to put doll clothes on Boo. Amazingly enough she consented to being pushed in the doll pram for several minutes before she hopped out to run off and hide under Harry and Ginny’s bed.
Nicole shook her head adamantly in denial that she had done something. “Noooooo.” She said before smiling at him. Harry almost lost it again. He was sure that Nicole had something to do with the kitten’s departure. She was too much like Fred and George to ever assume she was innocent. Harry looked around at his three kids and marveled once again at how much he loved them.
Saturday September 26th- Noon- The Potter’s Rooms:
“Happy Birthday Dear Emily! Happy Birthday to you!” Everyone finished singing and then cheered. The whole family, including Remus and Pru were there.
“Blow out your candles baby.” Ginny grinned at Emily before helping her to blow them out.
“Good job.” Liz smiled at the little girl before going to help Mrs. Weasley with the cake.
“YAH!” Emily cried before clapping her hands, her tiny face was the picture of joy. Remus who was holding her, laughed at her excitement.
Erik giggled. “Cake time.”
“Right you are, nephew of mine.” Fred told him before he picked Erik up. Fred turned to Mrs. Weasley with a pout. “Nana, we want cake.”
George seemed to have caught on because he picked up Nicole and whispered something to her. She stuck her finger in her mouth before smiling at her grandmother. “Peas!” She too pouted prettily.
“You are getting so good at that.” George beamed at her with pride in his voice.
Mrs. Weasley laughed. “All right you scamps, let me cut the cake.”
Ginny yawned but tried to hide it as she leaned against Harry. She had not returned from the birth until four that morning and she had gone straight to bed. She had still only gotten a few hours of sleep. “Thank you for setting up this morning.” She kissed his cheek.
“No problem.” Harry looked around at the balloons and banner that he had hung with Bill’s help that morning before the party. He watched Hagrid talk to Ron and Hermione and grinned at Colin who had walked over. He looked better that day than he had the day before.
“Hey Ginny, Harry.” Colin greeted them.
“Hey Colin.” They replied.
“I have not been to a birthday party in a long time.” He comment and smiled at Remus and Pru who were helping Emily eat her cake. She was still neat while Nicole was covered in chocolate. She and George were using their fingers to eat it.
“Sometimes I wonder which one of them is the child.” Ginny laughed as she looked at her brother and daughter.
“Yes but the kids love their uncles.” Harry reminded her. “Anyway, we did not really expect them to ever grow up.”
Colin shook his head. “They have not changed one bit since they were in school.”
“Why should they?” Bill asked as he came up to them holding Tyler. “They run a joke shop and they are not settling down until they find a set of redheaded twins.”
Harry and Ginny laughed but Colin looked over at him. “Red headed twins?”
“It’s their attempt at escaping the marriage trap, as they like to say. They have set the condition on their getting married that the girls have to be twins.” Ginny explained. “I only know two other sets of twins and none of them have red hair.”
Mr. Weasley wandered over and took his youngest grandson into his arms. “What are you talking about?”
“Red headed twins.” Colin was smiling. “I know some.”
“WHAT?” Harry, Ginny, Bill and Mr. Weasley all exclaimed.
Ginny got an evil look in her eyes as she smiled at her friend. “How old are they?”
“I think they are twenty. They are both Healers at St. Mungo’s.”
“That can’t be.” Harry said. “They would have been at Hogwarts with us.”
“They’re Americans who moved here a few months ago. I met them this past summer.” He stopped and got a guarded look in his eyes.
Harry saw it but spoke before anyone could question him. “Do you think we could meet them?” He knew that Colin was hiding something but he didn’t want to push him if he was not ready to share.
Colin shrugged. “I suppose I could owl them and ask if they could meet us in Hogsmeade.”
Ginny spoke next. “Are they identical?”
He grinned. “Right down to the last freckle.”
“What about looks?” Bill asked.
“Uh, about Hermione’s height but really curvy, long curly red hair, blue eyes… they are really beautiful.” Colin had closed his eyes as if trying to picture them better.
“Sounds perfect. Do they have a sense of humor?” Bill inquired.
“They were quite fun. Cho Chang is a Healer as well and they were always saying how she’s boring and too serious.” He was quiet for a few seconds before adding to his description. “They’re dead clever. They both were top of their classes in America and completed Healer training a year early.”
Harry could see the ideas forming in Ginny’s mind. “Really perfect. This has to be fate.”
“Now Ginny, dear…” Mr. Weasley began.
“What are you all talking about?” Fred interrupted them and glared at each suspiciously.
“We are conspiring on how we are going to get you married.” Ginny bit out sarcastically before she beamed at him. “Let’s go get more cake.” She and her father walked away.
“Why don’t I trust her?” Fred looked at Bill.
“You shouldn’t.” He laughed before walking over to Mrs. Weasley to get some cake.
Fred turned to Harry. “Is your wife up to something?” He probed sounding suspicious.
“Like I’d tell you if she was!” Harry retorted. “She’d have my head and you know what her temper is like.”
“Her hexes are legendary and let’s not forget her right hook.” Colin added helpfully.
Fred laughed jovially. “Fair point. I’ll just keep my eye out for her trickery.”
“Harry.” Remus called and he noticed that Emily was still in his arms. “The birthday girl is going to open her presents.”
Harry moved over and kissed Emily’s cheek and she held her arms out to him. “Shall we get to those presents?”
“Yef (yes).” Emily said and Harry sat her down next to a large pile of gifts which she started to open with glee. Nicole wanted to help and to Harry’s surprise she let her little sister open a few.
“You seem really happy.” Remus said to him later that day when all the kids were taking a nap and the adults were sitting around talking in small groups.
“I am.” Harry said. “What about you?”
Remus looked at his wife who was sitting next to him and Harry saw them share a smile. “We are great.”
Ginny came over to sit on Harry’s lap and he put his arms around her to pull her in close. “I’ve arranged it all with Colin. We’ll be meeting Madeline and Meredith Albertson in a few weeks, as long as they are willing to come. He thinks they will.”
“What’s this?” Pru asked her and Ginny explain all about Colin’s friends. “Sounds brilliant.” Pru said after she had heard all about them.
Ginny looked at Pru before cocking her head to the side to study her. “Why didn’t you tell us?”
Harry felt his eyes widen as he looked at his wife. “What are you on about?” He turned his head back to Pru and was reminded forcefully of another conversation he’d had like this.
Pru blushed, something he was not sure he’d ever see the seasoned Auror do. “It’s Emily’s birthday and we wanted it to be about her.”
Remus smiled at Ginny. “How did you know?”
Harry’s mouth dropped open. “You’re having a baby?” At their excited nods he grinned. “Congratulations!” His voice must have carried because soon everyone was hugging to couple. Harry pulled Ginny to one side and kissed her soundly. “You are going to make a great Matron if all you need to do is look at a woman to tell if she is pregnant.”
“What can I say? It’s a gift.” She said as she kissed him back.
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