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Chapter 16 : Chapter 13
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'It's so good to be back!' Gabby exclaimed as she walked through the sun lit halls which made up Beauxbatons Academy of Magic, her old school. She and her husband had just been greeted by Madame Maxine, the Headmistress and now they were making their way through the hallways towards the Beauxbatons hall of mirrors, where Lavender Finnegan and Remus Lupin's talk about werewolf rights was scheduled to take place in a couple of days. It had already been delayed due to the fact that the organisers had forgotten about the full moon and the bad weather they had encountered on their way from Russia to the South of France.
'It's just the students that are attending?' Dennis asked as he walked along side his wife.
'The students plus some local residents, who can't make it to the talk in Paris' she replied
'And this is the hall of mirrors' Gabby announced as they reached the room.
'Wow' was all Dennis could say as he entered the room. He expected it to be like Hogwarts, dark and gloomy but it was absolutely beautiful.
'You should have seen it at Christmas, with the ice sculptures and candles' Gabby remarked before holding back a laugh as Dennis reached into his rucksack and pulled out his camera and began taking pictures.
'Just move to the left...and turn your head a bit...bit more...perfect'
'Are you finished yet?' Gabby asked after she had been made to pose for at least 15 photos.
'Well I have to take some it's part of our cover' Dennis replied before snapping one last photo of his wife glaring at him.
'So there are going to be some external visitors?' Dennis asked.
'Yes' Gabby replied now scanning the room.
Dennis just nodded, before making a mental note to look up the people who had been invited to the talk. He and Gabby were meant to be retired from the whole secret agent business, especially since their role in the IDA had been revealed. However that was a couple of years ago now and no one would suspect them any more especially since they now ran a successful photography shop on Diagon Alley. Also he could tell that Gabby was going a bit stir crazy just being in the shop, as much as she love it, so when Tonks, the Head of the Auror Department had contacted them, they had jumped to the chance.
Remus had written to his wife, describing what he had been doing and he had mentioned a man who had asked some questions, which at the time had seemed normal but on reflection seemed a bit suspicious and he wanted information on the man. Tonks had known, with Harry already away at Hogwarts and the other Aurors already with Remus and Lavender as their security detail, that she could not spare more people to follow up what her over cautious husband had picked up on. She had therefore asked Dennis and Gabby to find out the information instead, knowing that they were probably the best in the business for gaining information discreetly and eager for the job.
The man that had been questioning Remus and turned out to be Ivan Volkov, the Russian minister for international affairs, the position he had inherited from his father-in-law Sergei Lebedev. However, apart from the fact that he had a nasty look scar on his face, was the only information they had been able to gather. Ivan Volkov's family was an Old Russian one and he had lands in Sayan mountain range all the way to Lake Baikal.
Gabby had just labelled Ivan as curious and had reassured Remus that there was nothing to be worried about but Dennis knew that the werewolf's instincts were normally right and he knew that they should do some for investigating. There was something not quite right.
'Dad!' Ollie called out, as she barged through his office door loudly.
'What is it Ollie?' Harry asked, shuffling pieces of parchment around his desk.
'How was Godric's Hollow?' Ollie asked, popping herself down into the chair in front of her Dad's messy desk. It was nearly two weeks since she had woken up after her accident and had made a full recovery. After a week of enduring poking and prodding by both Madam Pomfrey and all her classmates in her healing class, she had finally been freed from the Hospital Wing and had been thrust back into school life. She had to make up all the lessons she had missed and also to try and get her life organised. It was Halloween today and she was looking forward to sharing some pumpkin pie with her friends at the feast later.
'Yeah it was ok' Harry replied. 'I paid my respects, lit a candle in the church for them and visited the cottage' he said referring to his traditional annual pilgrimage to Godric's Hollow on the day on which all those years ago his life had changed forever. 'Did you go to the memorial?' he asked
'Yeah' Ollie replied 'though it was really cold and I couldn't stay long because I had lots of things to do'
'So what did you want to talk to me about?' Harry asked, because it was very unusual for Ollie to burst into to his office like she had just done, with a beaming smile on her face.
'I sent them off' Ollie announced
'You sent what off?'
'I sent my applications for Healer School off' she said excitedly
'Where did you apply in the end?' he asked curiously, having had no real input into his daughter's decision apart from telling Ollie that he would support her wherever she decided to go.
'Well I applied to St Etheldreda's in London' Ollie replied 'and Sister Bernadette's near Bordeaux' she added nervously, wondering what her Dad would make of that.
'Bordeaux, in France! You didn't think about Ireland?'
'I have fond memories of growing up in France, when you were teaching at Beauxbatons and anyway it would be a great place to study' she replied arms crossed.
'I know' Harry replied 'you'll just be so far away but I'm happy if your happy' Harry stated pulling Ollie into a hug and pressing at kiss to the top of her head. 'My little girl is all grown up. I can't believe that you're in your last year at Hogwarts and preparing to take on the world, just yesterday you were colouring in unicorns with Luna'
'Dad!' Ollie said exasperatedly, not wanting him to carry on with his speech about how he remembered when she was the twins' age and all the embarrassing things she had got up to and how sweet she had been.
'Was there anything else?' Harry asked as Ollie pulled out of the hug 'I'm always here if you need to talk. How are things with Austin?'
'Thanks Dad' Ollie replied 'but I'm ok at the moment, just getting along'
'Well that's good' Harry said as they stood there in an awkward silence
'Well, I'd better get ready for the feast' Ollie said finally, turning to leave the room. However as she did, she caught sight of something poking out from a pile of unmarked essays. All she could see was a violet eye, semi hidden from view. What had really grabbed her attention was the fact that the eye looked exactly like her own. 'Dad, what's that?' she asked, pointing at the partially hidden picture.
'Oh, that's nothing' Harry said horridly, rushing over to obscure it from view
'Dad!' Ollie said angrily, knowing that her father was deliberately hiding something from her. 'What are you hiding?'
'It's nothing Ollie, just some work stuff!'
'Then why can't I have a look? Don't tell me its top secret because that has not stopped me before' Ollie retorted reaching over to grab the mysterious photo.
'Ollie' Harry said sternly, placing his hand on top of hers, trying to stop her from getting the photograph. He really did not want to tell her what he had found out from McGonagall, now was not a good time.
'Dad' Ollie replied, her fingers to prise the picture from underneath the pile of paperwork
Ollie stopped struggling in shock, her Dad rarely used her first name. Andromeda, Tonks, Narcissa, Luna and even Jon called her Kitty, but never her Dad. She couldn't even remember the last time he had used it, maybe when she had been up to no good when she was younger. Ollie was torn, she really wanted to see what her Dad was hiding from her, who was this person who had eyes just like hers. Taking advantage if the pause in movement, Ollie reached forward with her free hand and pulled out the photograph from underneath the pile of parchment.
'Dad, what is this?' Who is this?' she asked in shock as she stared down at the picture of a young woman who was smiling towards the camera. If she ever wanted to know what she would look like if she dyed her hair blond, here was what she would look like. They had the same eyes, the same figure , though it was hard t tell because the woman was wearing a fir lined cloak and the same face down to the button nose. The only difference was that this woman had a glorious mane of blonde, almost white, hair, whereas Ollie had black unruly curls. Apart from that they were practically identical.
'Please tell me this is who I think this is' she stated, when her father failed to reply.
'Yes it is Ollie' Harry replied finally
'But how?' Ollie asked wondering how her father had this picture, when they had spent so many years not knowing her mother's identity.
Harry wordlessly shuffled through the rest of the pieces of parchment on his desk until he came across the document which the photograph had been attached to. He then handed it over to Ollie so she could read it. This was not now he imagined she'd find out.
Ollie scanned through the document detailing her mother's involvement in the Order of the Phoenix. 'But how did you get this?' she asked after reading that her mother had gone missing.
'McGonagall found it when she was tidying her office' Harry replied
'And when did she give this to you?' Ollie questioned
'About two weeks ago' Harry said, bracing himself for the explosion which was about to happen.
Ollie did not disappoint, her Black temper coming out in full force. 'TWO WEEKS!' she exclaimed angrily. 'You've kept something, so important to me secret for two weeks? When were you planning to tell me about this?' she asked, folding her arms and glaring at her father.
'Ollie, McGonagall gave this to me when you were still unconscious and then you were recovering and sorting out your healer school applications, I did not want to upset or distract you'
'You planned to keep this secret?' Why do you try and keep everything secret, don't you trust me?'
'Of course I do' Harry said calmly, trying to placate his daughter.
'Then why don't you tell me everything? First it was that you were taking over Uncle Remus' job and then that you were all moving to the castle and now this. What else have you been keeping from me! After all we've been through together, Egypt, your capture and trial, you'd think that you could trust me and stop treating me like a child' she ranted, everything which she had bottled up now coming out.
'Ollie I didn't mean to upset you'
'Dad, I'm not upset, I'm absolutely furious!' she shouted. I can't believe you! Do you remember when we were just Papa and Ollie, who shared everything with each other and were best friends? Now I hardly know you!'
'We could go that, if you want' Harry said 'we can fix this. I'm really sorry, I just wanted to protect you because I love you'
'Dad, I'm of age now, I'm an adult and I don't need you to keep on protecting me. I can look after myself and make my own decisions'
'Ollie, I'm your father and I vowed to protect you'
'Well maybe I don't want a father' Ollie shouted 'if it means being lied to all the time.' Still holding the picture and document tightly in her hands she stormed out of her father's office, wanting to get as far away from him as possible.
Harry sank down into his chair, his head in held in his hands. What had he done?
He thought that his relationship with his daughter had been getting better, but now it seemed that in doing what he thought was right he had only made it worse.
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