Chapter 10 : This Won't Be the Last Goodbye
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Chapter Ten: This Won’t Be the Last Goodbye
The robes reached down to his ankles, thanks to some of Hermione’s expert wand work, he looked fairly good. He was also spared a trip of venturing into Diagon Alley. This was going to be his first public appearance, if it was really public, but there would be a good amount of people who would try to just get a good look at them. From what he had heard, the ceremony was small, everyone from the Order that was still alive, several of Tonks’ Auror friends, a few family members, some DA members, and a couple more, and for the most part he knew everyone, but they were some security measures that were going on just for him.
A single reporter was allowed in, Allan Green who seemed honest enough. His photographer was the only one allowed a camera. Several Aurors were going to be there as security and if anyone tried to approach Harry and Harry gave them the signal of messing up his hair, they would whisk Harry away. Harry hoped he didn’t do that accidently.
It seemed a little much for him, but he knew that he would appreciate it nonetheless. He was just glad that Tonks was past the age of having any fangirls as friends, or at least in a profession where it would suicidal.
A knock on the door distracted him, and he answered, “Come in.”
Ginny waltzed in and while her dress robes were somber for the occasion, Harry felt his breath being taken away. He remembered Healer General, and he smiled. “You look handsome.” Ginny said and then straightened out a clip of some sort that Harry had missed.
“You look beautiful.” he said into her ear and she grinned up at him.
“You are too kind.” Ginny said and then started to head out the door, “We don’t want to be late.” Harry followed her. It seemed like yesterday that Andromeda had come over and told him that they was going to be a service and while the sad news had been punctuated by playing with Teddy. Not long after, Dennis Creevey had sent him a letter asking him to go to Colin’s funeral. Harry had accepted, and was glad that Colin was a muggle-born. Several of his school friends would be there, but he was going to be wearing muggle clothes and everyone else was going to be muggles. He had been told by Kingsley himself that he was in contact with the Weasleys and anytime he left the premises an Auror would be following him. Kingsley had reminded him that he had no choice in the matter.
He was curious how Mrs. Weasley would go about the matter, but going out was not worth seeing her floo to his office. He knew that there were people who were stalking him, women who were researching everything that had ever been written. Luckily, few was written about the Weasleys and none of the girls seemed smart enough to look through the public files. Or if they have, the Ministry has prevented them from getting there.
He smoothed out his dress robes and made sure that the slip of paper was still in his pocket. Hermione smiled at him, and Ron put his arm around her shoulder. He was already starting to sweat from the July sun and the long sleeves that were necessary for such a somber event. The pink lines were slowly going away but were still very much there and it would be obvious if he was without long sleeves. He had started looking up glamour spells, but whenever someone walked in he had to put the various books down so he hardly got anywhere and had no luck.
Mr. Weasley held an old teddy bear up, “This is the portkey, everyone put a finger on.” The group did as instructed and he started countdown. “6..5..4..3..2..1.” The familiar pull of his navel and feeling of disorientation as the group landed in front of a house. Harry almost fell over, but thankfully, Hermione sort of accidentally held on to him so she could regain her balance, and it steadied him.
“I will never get used to that.” She said, and Harry readjusted his glasses.
The only other time he had been in front of this house, he was sort of unconscious and the night wasn’t the most pleasant one he had ever experienced. He took a deep breath and remembered everything that they had told him, it wasn’t his fault. It was Voldemort’s. Just what Ginny said.
“Oh, everyone,” Andromeda walked outside. “It’s so good for you to come.”
She lead them through the house and into the backyard where several of the guests were already there. Harry noticed that, unlike Fred’s funeral, the coffins weren’t there. He thought about asking, but decided that it wasn’t anything that important.
“Please, dear sit down,” A man was standing behind Andromeda, “You go relax, Alex and I can take it over from here.”
“Oh, Kieren, this is-”
“I know, I know.” The man held out his hand, and shook everyone’s. “I’m Kieren,” he said, “Tonks and I worked together, and we worked with that man over there, Alex.” He pointed at a man that was shuffling chairs. “We will be the ushers, and,” he turned back to Andromeda, “I will show you to your chair.” He soon seated everyone, and people continued to arrive. He would see several school friends and they would wave, but there was no time for talking.
“Ginny!” Hermione said.
“What?” she asked.
“You keep staring, he’s a little old.” Hermione said.
“He’s nice to look at.” Ginny defended.
“Wait!” Ron seemed to have finally caught on, “Who are we talking about?”
At this, the two girls started giggling. “Oh, Ron, when will you ever learn?” Harry asked.
“That sometimes, you really should just let girls have their daydreams.”
“When did you become Mr. Wiseguy?” Ron asked and Harry just shrugged.
Kingsley stood at the front of the stage, and the crowd silenced. “Today we are celebrating the lives of two of the bravest people I’ve ever had the privileges to know. Their union marks a love so pure that nothing could ever tear them apart.” Kingsley paused, “Remus Lupin and Nymphadora Tonks will be missed forever more. I however, could never do the justice of accurately representing them, so I’ve asked several people to help me. First, Kieren Davidson and Alex Cartin.” The two men stood up and started to speak. Harry looked around nervously, he could feel the butterflies in his stomach. He wasn’t too fond of public speaking, would much rather face Voldemort again then have to address a large crowd. But if he wanted to change the Ministry he better learn to do it. As the two talked about Tonks’ and her clumsiness but how she was an awesome friend and such and Harry took out the sheet of paper and reread it carefully. there was a podium, that he was grateful for, and the two headed down and Kingsley came up again. “I must agree with those words. Next up, is Harry Potter.”
Several people turned to look as Harry stood up, those who didn’t know him or had never met him. Taking a deep breath he walked slowly to the podium, careful not the trip. He took out the slip of paper and laid it out in front of him.
“Remus was the last connection to my father. After Sirius died, he was the only one who I felt I could talk to about James. He was there for me and helped me, he mentored me and I just wish I could have known him earlier. No matter what, I know that Remus will be looking down on me and guiding me, just as my parents did. Remus was a stand-in dad for me, and I know that if he was still alive he would be an excellent father for Teddy. When I was named the godfather, I promised that no matter what, I will be just as reckless as Sirius was for me.” Harry stopped and wiped his face. “Remus Lupin allowed me to discover who I was to those around me. He deserves to live even more than I do. When him and Tonks were married, I can say I wasn’t happy that they were married without me there, but I can say that they do not deserve what happened. I say, let us honor their memory!” He quickly took off the stage and sat back in his seat. It wasn’t very good, he thought, but there was hard applause all around.
The rest blurred. He remembered several other people going up and Teddy did something cute and everyone said ahh. The lunch afterwards, lots of people told him that he did well on his speech and before he knew it, he was back in the Burrow. Ron and Hermione were walking around outside and Harry sat in his bed and cried. Why did all of this happen to him?
The next day came, and Harry took out his best muggle clothes. Hermione, Ron, and Ginny were all downstairs as he joined them, remembering how it was told that his death was an accident of falling down stairs or something like that. The only thing true about that was it was a great accident, but of a much more noble cause.
They arrived and the ceremony speed through Harry’s mind. He remembered Dennis going up, as well as his father, who Harry remembered Colin had told him was a milkman. The ceremony was very different than Fred’s and Tonks’ and Lupin’s, but he sort of liked it better. There was a reading from the Bible, and a message that went along with it. Some sort of priest led it, and Harry thought he sort of liked it better.
The didn’t stay for the reception afterwards, but wished Dennis a goodbye, waved at a few friends, and then left. As they walked into the Burrow, Harry fell onto the couch. “This is just too much.”
“What do you mean?” Ginny asked, she was the only one in the house. Ron and Hermione had decided to walk about, and everyone else was out for other reasons. He was pretty sure that Mrs. Weasley was picking up something at Diagon Alley.
“It’s a lot to take in. It’s been two months, almost three when Voldemort left and all of the funerals, it just proved that it actually happened.”
“Isn’t that good thing?” Ginny asked not sure where he was going with this.
“But it also means that all those people died, and most of them I didn’t even know.” Harry sighed. “The names, I looked over them and it seemed like I didn’t even know half of them and they all believed me, even though I had never even had a conversation with them.”
“Harry, sometimes, people die for no reason.”
“What do you mean.”
“I don’t want to insult you, but for example your mother. Your father was going to die, but he was trying to give Lily some time to escape and she didn’t. You know why?” Ginny didn’t allow Harry to answer. “Because she knew that she was going to have to stand up to Voldemort, and there was no time like the present. She didn’t have to die, but when she did, she made you infinitely safer than if she had run.”
Harry let the words sink into him, and then he looked into Ginny’s eyes not ashamed of the tears forming around his eyes. “Thank you.”
She smiled and leaned slightly closer when the door opened and Ginny jumped back like there was an Acromantula on him. “Harry.” He heard Bill enter and smiled. “Can I speak to you for a moment.” Harry looked at Ginny who shrugged and then followed Bill into the next room.
“How are you?” Bill asked.
“Good.” Harry said and looked around. Why was Bill here? Sure, Bill was a Weasley, but he lived in Shell Cottage now and Harry couldn’t think of a good reason as to why he wanted to talk to Harry.
“That’s good,” Bill said, “But I don’t have much good news myself.” Harry just stared at him quizzically. “I was at Gringotts today.” The realization dawned on Harry. “And they aren’t too happy with you.” Harry nodded. “They are demanding money a large sum, but I think you have enough. Well more than enough.”
“Pay it.” Harry said.
“Are you sure?” Bill asked.
“Yes.” Harry said and Bill wrote something onto a piece of parchment he had.
“On the other side, that means you will be able to access your account again, and since you’ve reached 17 you can go into the Black and Potter vault.”
“What do you mean?” Harry asked, “I’ve already been inside the Potter vault.”
Bill laughed and Harry looked around, trying to figure out what was so funny. “The Potter’s are very old and wealthy pureblood family. What you had access to was a good amount of their wealth but nowhere near to all of it. Plus there are the heirlooms and such.” Harry blinked. He probably wouldn’t have to work in his life he didn’t want to. “Also, there is Voldemort’s wealth.”
“Wealth?” Harry asked.
“I know it seems strange, but since there is no will or anything since you defeated him you get his possessions.”
“Medieval.” Bill said and Harry nodded, “It’s old wizarding law and that’s just the way it is. It doesn’t seem like much but since Voldemort defeated plenty of people he did have a good amount of wealth that I don’t think he ever knew about.”
Harry let that sink in and sighed. What was he supposed to do with all of that money. “Does that mean your mum gets all of Bellatrix’s stuff?”
“No, her husband is still alive.” Harry nodded and then Bill spoke again, “I know this is very daunting right now, but if you want, Kingsley has set up a charity fund to help families who were affected by the war both muggles and wizards.”
“Put 50 thousand Galleons in there for now and if they need anymore don’t hesitate to put more in.” Bill raised his eyebrows and then nodded. He wrote more things on his parchment and then shook hands with Harry. “Can you be in control of my finances for right now?” Harry asked. “I will pay you.”
“You don’t need to pay me.” Bill said and Harry shook his head.
“I won’t pay you very much then.” Harry said, “But if I need something can you approve it and such.”
Bill nodded and then turned to leave. “Oh, and be careful with my sister.” Harry felt his ears turn red and Bill smiled knowingly and then left. Harry looked at his watch and then leaned back in his chair. How did this happen to him?
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