Chapter 9 : Spring
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Harry apparated to the home of Andromeda and Teddy. It was not a large house, nor was it a small house, but a typical post world war two house set on several acres of land with trees and lawn in such a manner as to allow much privacy in the back yard and still have a decent setback from the rural road that they lived on. The nearest neighbor was almost a kilometer away.
Harry was invited in, and after greeting Andromeda, turned his attention to Teddy, now about 9 months old. Precocious for a boy so young, upon being seated on Harry’s knee, his hair immediately turned black and unkempt, and a lightning strike scar appeared on his forehead. Clearly he inherited his mother’s ability as a Metamorphmagus, and could therefor change his appearance at will.
He was able to walk by the age of eight months, and was now running around the house, bumping into things, falling down and laughing. If he wanted something, he could point at it and it would levitate and float towards him. Andromeda quickly learned to keep small things put away and heavy stuff magicked to the floor so that they could not be lifted. He was already able to speak words and called Andromeda “Andy.” Quickly he learned to call Harry by name, it came out “Hareeeeee.”
Harry helped get Teddy ready for bed. He had a stuffed bear, and when he pointed to it, the bear flew into his arms. Andy assured Harry that it was a plain muggle bear with no magical properties. The magic was all Teddy’s.
Harry spoke with Andromeda and she promised to bring Teddy around to Potter Hall next Friday at noon, so that he could help the Rooks with their reading. Harry was guessing that not a lot of reading would occur that day.
On Friday next, Andromeda and Teddy floo into the Hall to the surprise and delight of Ron and Hermione. After their lunch, (Teddy would eat only very rare meat—a throwback to his father’s affliction of being a werewolf) they retired to the library. Harry raised his hand asking for a simple book that Teddy could look at. Down came a book on simple magic spells for children. It did have fairly large print for a book so old, and some rough sketches on what actions were to be taken. The book flew around the room, ‘saw’ Teddy, and settled down right in front of him and opened itself to the first chapter.
Teddy was impressed with the book. He looked at it. The pictures moved in wizard fashion, and the words were simple. He picked it up and tried to sound out the words. Andromeda had always read to Teddy, but had never gone through the alphabet sounding out the letters. Nonetheless, Teddy seemed to have figured this out on his own: He was trying to sound out the words. Clearly as Andromeda read to him he was following the words and the letter arrangements and correlating them with the sounds that Andy was making.
He read: “Floating Charm.” He said Floating Charm rather clearly. He looked at the pictures, said “Floating Charm” while pointing at Hermione’s glass of pumpkin juice. He said the word “Come” and the glass of pumpkin juice came to him. He grabbed it up and drank it down. The assembled multitudes in Harry’s Library cheered and clapped their hands.
Harry said, “Enough Reading, Let’s go to the Great Room!” and they all went down to the Great Room, and Harry brought out a box, giving it to Teddy. The box said “Broom” on it in big bold letters. Teddy said “Broom” and opened the box to find a child sized plastic broom. He saw the picture of a child astride the broom flying, and so Teddy mounted the broom, and tried to jump up in the air. The broom lifted him up, and he flew about a foot above the floor and moved at a walking pace. Teddy found that he could turn the broom to his own will. Around the room he sailed, with the adults laughing their heads off. As he came around the room, Ron grabbed him off of the broom, and Teddy looked at him. His hair turned a bright shade of red, and the two laughed at each other.
The Rooks took a break from their readings around three in the afternoon, and they walked through the portal into the Cottage, and then into Godric’s Hollow. They visited several shops, bought some things that delighted Teddy, and Teddy delighted the people in town. Harry saw some little girls trying to give away kittens. Harry looked them over. There was an all-black kitten that caught his eye. He held out his hand and the kitten jumped up onto his arm, and looked him in the face then started licking him.
Harry said to the girls, “I think you made a sale. How much do you want for this kitten?”
“Harry! We are giving them away, not selling them.”
And Harry replied, “And I am giving away ten galleons, so I think we are even, yes?” And Harry took the cat back into Potter Hall with him. Teddy decided to call the cat Sirius. Harry asked him why he choose that name. Teddy said, “Andy’s Cousin.” It turned out that the cat was a female, but the name would be the same anyway.
“Well,” spoke Harry, “that is a great name, and it is a good thing that you thought of it, because Sirius was also my Godfather.” Teddy had no response to that, but smiled a mile wide.
As soon as Constance saw the kitten, she hustled about the family kitchen to set up bedding for the animal, and a litter box. “We will have to get some real litter for the box, and some real cat food too.” No sooner did she say these things than she ran out to Godric’s Hollow, got what she needed, and set them up for the kitten. The kitten seemed quite pleased with these arrangements, but also followed Harry wherever he went.
After supper Andy and Teddy floo back home again, and Harry put away the toys that Teddy had left out. Harry conjured up a colorful toy box, with a special bracket on the lid to hold Teddy’s broom. Teddy was told that there was not enough room at Andy’s house to play with the broom. Harry put the toy box in the Great Room, for that room was entirely too serious, and needed a colorful toy box to bring life into the room.
Harry continued to spend time with Ginny on Thursdays, and also on Saturday if she had a game. He always made time to visit the Slytherin common room as well as the Gryffindor common room. Students from Ravenclaw and Hufflepuff besieged him, and so now he visited every common room for at least a half an hour. Kids found him easy to talk to, and if one had issues, they could catch Harry aside and he always had kind words and advice for them. He did not need passwords or riddles to get into a common room because he could apparate there, something that no one else in the castle could do. Or so they thought. Ginny could do it too, but was wise enough not to do so unless it was very, very urgent.
Harry saw that Renford was doing well, and that he had no more issues with anyone, not even his parents. Harry told him, “I wish I had parents.” They all knew the story of Harry Potter. It was even now part of the curriculum.
As for Thornton, he and his friends were still grab-assed about, but they were far more subtle and circumspect about it. Harry took this to be a good sign. Thornton seemed to settle his attractions down to a single boy and this was Alex Treetops, another seventh year student. He was very studious lad and would likely up top in his class. He also had a much better sense of dress than Thornton. He wore trousers with a belt, and so nobody, not even Thornton could pull his pants down, while Thornton continued to wear sweats and other gear that was easily yanked down. At least he wore underpants, but Harry wondered how long that would go on. He might shock them all one day, but then Harry realized that he would not forego them: he was very bashful of his endowment, thinking, maybe correctly, that it was the smallest in the school. As much as he liked the idea of athleticism, and he was well built and strong otherwise, he would never have joined the quidditch team or any other sport, such as swimming because of this. At least he managed this aspect of reality well.
It was on a Sunday morning, around two am when Harry sat up with pain in his scar. It had never pained him since the passing of Voldemort. But now he jumped as if he were alive. He was walking toward Narcissa Malfoy, he fired the Avada Kedavra spell, and she fell to the ground dead. Harry jumped into a suit of tactical gear and silently, invisibly apparated to Malfoy Manor. He saw a dark figure moving toward him and then went downstairs.
Harry looked into the room where he had come from and found both Lucius and Narcissa dead. He inspected them with the pensive-scope, but there was nothing to be seen. The Avada Kedavra spell shuts the brain completely off like a light switch. Harry took out his notebook wrote to Phoenix “Help Needed Malfoy Manor Draco’s Floo.” Harry stepped into Draco’s room, and awoke him quietly. It took Draco a few minutes to realize that Harry was there, he held his finger to his lips. He said to Draco “You have intruders in the Manor, they have killed Lucius and Narcissa.”
Just then other members of the Order of the Phoenix popped out of the Floo. Harry told them that his scar awakened him, he witnessed the killing of Narcissa, and that she and Lucius were dead. That the intruder had gone down the stairs. Ron led the way down the steps, quietly merging into the woodwork with the others following behind him. Kingsley held Draco back, “Draco, these others are trained fighters, you are not. Let’s go to your parent’s room to see what we can discover.”
Stacked up behind Ron were Harry, Arthur, Molly, Hermione and Ginny. Ron heard a noise from the left. He stepped out flinging a silent, wandless Avada Kedavra spell without any intention of hitting anyone, and then ran to cover on the other side of the hallway. Two return shots came down the hallway, and then there was a scramble toward their direction. Using the stairway for cover the two figures were positioning themselves to shoot at Ron, but this brought them right under the Order of the Phoenix, when they were hit by several spells each. They were bound and petrified, and hung up by their heels. Harry bound them together back to back and took their wands.
Harry quietly said, “There may be more, check the house. Shoot first ask questions if they live.” Harry, Ron, Hermione and Ginny drew their chi in tight, they apparated silently from place to place, appearing, seeing, and disappearing, never in one place long enough for anyone to pull a bead on them. No one was found. Only these two. Avery and Travers. They were taken by floo by Ron and Harry to the Ministry of Magic. Kingsley came with them and secured them in two separate interrogation rooms.
Meanwhile, upstairs, Arthur, Molly, Hermione, and Ginny found Draco, who was sobbing uncontrollably. Molly drew him to her breast, hugged him tightly, and tried to console him.
Arthur said to the other girls, “Inspect the room see what they were looking for. Try to discover if anything was taken.”
Ginny looked at Lucius, “His ring is missing. See the mark where it was, and the marks on his finger where it was ripped off. If I recall it was a fairly large ring with a red stone of some sort.”
Arthur asked when she had ever seen his ring. “I saw it in Flourish and Blots in my first year. He had taken a book out of my cauldron, and then put it back again. I saw the ring on his hand.”
Ginny went up to Draco, “We think these intruders took your Father’s ring. You can see where it was and you can see where it was pulled off of his finger. What can you tell us about this ring?”
Hermione got him a seat, Molly stayed with him holding his head to her. Draco looked at his Father’s hand, his eyes widened. “That ring has very strong magical powers. It has access to millions and millions of galleons of wealth. I, we, need to have that ring back.”
Ginny opened her rook-book and flashed a message to Harry, so that he would know to look for that ring.
Gently, Molly got Draco to look through his parent’s room. Draco did not think that any of the disturbed papers meant anything. But he was worried about the Ring. Molly called a wizarding undertaker who would come to the Manor to collect the bodies, and to arrange with Draco what arrangements he would want made.
Molly left Hermione at the manor to tidy up loose ends, and to help the undertakers when they arrived. The Weasleys apparated to the Burrow with Draco in tow. They comforted him as well as they could, Ginny was there to support him. And all of a sudden he realized what the difference between a family and some rich people living in a manor. Molly and Arthur sat with him all night long.
Kingsley, Harry and Ron went into the first interrogation room, Travers was seated and secured to the chair across the table. Harry sat opposite him, Ron stood to Harry’s right, Kingsley to his left. Kingsley asked him for some generic information, where he was since the war, what he did during the war, what he has been doing since the war.
Harry lifted up his right index finger and it glowed bright blue, and Travers looked at the light and Harry locked into his eyes. Travers answered some of Kingsley’s questions.
Travers said, “I stayed in a safe house in London.” Harry nodded.
Travers said, “I fought with Voldemort’s side, maybe killed a few people, but was almost killed myself, so I guess we are even.” Harry nodded.
Travers said, “I have been laying low, living on what money that had on my person.” Harry shook his head.
Harry asked him, “So you did not steal food from a nearby supermarket? You did not lift a woman’s purse, ID and credit cards? Where is that wallet, and credit card now? You kept the card and money and threw the bag in a dumpster behind the store. You used your ability to apparate to slip in and out of places like the supermarket.”
Kingsley said, “Muggle police might be interested some of this stuff. But we are not interested petty muggle crimes. What were you doing in Malfoy Manor?”
Travers said nothing.
Harry read Travers’ memory, “We went in there to look for Malfoy’s treasures. Voldemort read Lucius’ mind and found that there was a huge hoard of gold and gems hidden in the manor. Lucius’ Ring was the key to the treasure vaults. We apparated into the foyer of the Manor, went up the stairs found Malfoy’s room. Avery used the Avada Kedavra curse on Lucius while he was sleeping. He then turned and hit Narcissa. I looked through his papers, and lifted his billfold which was on the table. He had a bag of Galleons which I also took. Meanwhile Avery yanked on Lucius’ finger, and pulled the ring off. We went down stairs to look for the vaults. Before we could find them we heard people moving about upstairs. We hid in the shadows where we could see the stairway. Someone ran down and across the hallway. He flashed the killing curse at us, but missed. We moved toward the stairway to see where he went, and others dropped their curses on us. Now we are here.”
And Kingsley said, “And now you will stay here or at Azkaban for the rest of your life. Now then, where is Lucius’ Ring?”
Travers said nothing, Harry read, “Avery has it.”
Kingsley bound up Travers more securely, and then the moved to Avery’s room. The interview was similar and the ring was found on Avery’s person. “Voldemort discovered Lucius’ secret, and examined the manor. He did not have the ring, and so could not find anything. It was not time to compromise Lucius, he could always go back and get the ring later. He did not know that for him there would be no later.”
Harry took the bound two, and apparated to Azkaban. Delores Umbridge greeted him rather coldly, accepted the two prisoners, and Harry watched the guards put the prisoners in their cells. Harry dropped the spells that held them bound, and put a Blue Trace on them as well as a death charm on them so that if they left the island without an Auror removing the spell they would suffocate to death. Harry made sure that they knew that this spell had been applied to them.
Harry apparated to the Burrow, Ron had done that a little earlier. By breakfast Draco was a bit more composed, and joined the Weasleys for breakfast. Eating as a family was a new experience to him. Now he was weeping not so much about his parents, but in the family life that he had never known. Draco had been going out with Astoria Greengrass, but she was less interested since she did not want to live in or raise a family in Malfoy Manor. Now Draco understood what she meant. It gave him a lot to think about as Kingsley appeared in the floo with Lucius’ ring.
Draco took the ring, looked at it, and said, “I know that it has magic and that my father took the greatest care of it, but I really do not know what it does.”
Kingsley said, “according to Travers and Avery, it is a key to hidden vaults inside of Malfoy Manor. Do you think that you could come with us while we examine the Manor?”
Draco said, “No, you and the others take the key and then let me know what you found. I’d like to stay here with Mr. and Mrs. Weasley.”
Molly caressed his head, and held it closely to herself while he wept. Hermione and Ginny remained at the Burrow with Draco and the Weasleys, and Harry and Ron apparated with Kingsley to the Manor. Kingsley put on the ring and moved along the walls looking for… There! The ring reacted with a stone on the wall, the stone shown bright red under the influence of the ring. Kingsley pushed on the stone and a heavy stone wall moved easily. There was a chamber, and a stairway that led down a flight of stairs. The three of them lit their wands, and descended the stairs.
At the bottom of the stairs there was another chamber. Kingsley moved the ring along the walls, red stones appeared in the three walls, right, left, and forward. Kingsley pushed on the stone to the left. Inside was another chamber. Inside there were skeletons, row upon row of them. Normally skeletons would not hang together like this when the ligaments rotted away. But on these skeletons, the bones were held in place with waxed string. There were tags on the skeletons. They were all, it seemed, Malfoy remains dating back to the year 1200.
The Manor was nowhere near that old, perhaps the early 1800s at the earliest. Kingsley examined the bones, and the strings binding them. The string was all of the same age, the knots were all the same, from the 1200s skeletons to the 1800s skeletons. “These seemed to have been moved here when the Manor was built. I wonder why. Did they build the Manor on top of the existing cemetery?” It was a rhetorical question for there was no answer to it.
Kingsley took some pictures and then closed this room, and pushed open the middle room. This room had what looked like thousands of artifacts in it. Most were gold or silver. There was furniture that appeared to be very old and very valuable. Kingsley took more pictures and then closed the door, and pushed open the last door from this chamber.
This third chamber contained gold. Several perhaps 12 pallets stacked with gold. Gold bars of several sizes, by the hundreds. Kingsley said, “This looks valuable, no wonder people were attempting to break into the Manor.” Kingsley took out the camera and photographed the contents of this room.
They locked up this room, went upstairs and locked up the upper chamber. Kingsley surveyed the manor with a keen eye on the floor space. He guessed that they had seen about one quarter of this basement. Kingsley went around and around the manor and on the other side of the foyer, he found another red stone. He pushed on that red stone, and he found another stairway that also went down to a secondary chamber.
Again he opened the wall to his left. This was an empty room, but Ron and Harry recognized it. It was the cellar room in which they had been held captive last year, the dining room would be directly above this. Kingsley walked all around this room and at the far end he found another red stone. He pushed that wall and found himself in what appeared to be the pantry. The food in here was current according to the dates on the packaging.
They left the area where were looking, and pushed open the middle door in the chamber and found more gold and silver objects of all kinds. Kingsley took some more pictures and closed the door. Next he opened the last door. This room had books of magic, probably as old as those at Potter Hall. Well the books in Potter Hall were printed, so there had to be more of the same books elsewhere. These, being in a basement room were not as well kept as the ones at Potter Hall. Harry opened one of the older ones and recognized it as one that he had already read. He showed it to Kingsley, who nodded.
They closed up this room, and returned upstairs. Kingsley continued his survey, and decided that there was more basement than what they had found. They walked around the rest of the first floor, but found nothing of great interest. They went out to the back yard through the kitchen door. Kingsley realized that the kitchen itself took up much of the basement at the rear of the house. He ran the ring around the walls outside of the house, but he did not need it. There was a wooden door that entered the basement from the back yard. They opened it and went inside. It was a coal bin. All of the coal was piled up on the left side of the room. The right side of the room was empty, but that was an outside wall and so was not all that interesting.
Harry stood back, the others stood behind him and Harry said “Accio Coal,” and the coal moved to the other side of the room. They examined the wall where the coal had been. There was another red stone. They pushed that door open but this was a dirt floor, and none of the walls had a red telltale on it. But they were standing on a wooden hatch. The opened the hatch and there was a stairway that went down. It was an earthen chamber, as if right in the center of the manor. All around the walls were dozens of cloth sacks. Kingsley opened one of the sacks. It was filled with uncut diamonds. He photographed it and the room. The bag had a white tag on it. He looked at the other bags, six of them had white tags on them, and it proved that each one held uncut diamonds. The bags weighed about 75 pounds each. Some of the bags had green tags on them, and these proved to be emeralds. Four bags, again about 75 pounds each. More bags had red tags, and these had rubies in them. Again about 75 pounds each. Two bags had blue tags on them and these held sapphires.
Harry moved some of these bags, and he found another hatch. He opened that and found another stairway, more of a ladder, really. Here the ground was different. It seemed more like old lava than earth. There was a beam with ropes and tackle and a hole that seemed to go down. His light could not see very far in there. The ropes did not look like they would hold much weight they were very old, but there was a lot of rope here so it may have been a very deep hole. Kingsley took more pictures. “Must be a diamond mine, you think?” Maybe he thought that was a joke, but the Rooks were not so sure about that, they would have Hermione do some research into that.
Next they went up to the second floor. Kingsley scanned the walls around the floor, and he got a red stone near the top of the stairway. He pushed that door open, and found a small hall with more books, these seemed to be in use. There were all kinds of gold and silver instruments. Some were clearly magical. He made more pictures in this room and of several of the individual instruments. This room had its own light, from windows in the roof.
They checked more and more places around the Manor, but they were satisfied that they had them all. The then went to Lucius room and off of the master bedroom was an office. This had not been disturbed by Travers and Avery, and in here they found a vault. It had a combination lock on it, but the combination was written on a card next to the vault. Kingsley opened the vault, and there was some bank information in it, accounts at Gringotts and accounts at other banks. There was also a will and last testament, leaving all to Narcissa, and/or Draco. Kingsley took the will, and the bank information.
They left, locked up the Manor and then apparated to the Burrow. They were there in time for lunch. They took their time to visit with the Weasleys, and then Kingsley, Harry, Ron and Arthur took Draco aside, and went over with him what was found in the manor. Kingsley laid out the photographs of what was found there. “I suspect that this makes you the richest wizard in Great Britain.” Kingsley told him. Draco sat down and cried. His father never told him on the vast fortunes that they were sitting on. It made Draco wonder what his father was all about anyway.
Draco also thought of his girlfriend, Astoria Greengrass. She would have nothing to do with the Manor, and would not consider his suit if it entailed living in Malfoy Manor. Draco was still seeing her, and wanted to marry her. Now the issue became clear. He had a fine mansion, but no family life. The Weasleys had no fancy house, their house was a hodge-podge of wooden boxes piled one on top of the other and it must have been magic that was holding it together, because the laws of physics would not support it. But there was a family here, there was love and caring people. This was a home rather than just a house. Draco decided to clear out of Malfoy Manor.
Draco went into the room where Ginny and Hermione were sitting, Arthur and Molly were there. “Kingsley, we need to get to Gringotts and have them to help us with the fungible contents of the house. Would you do that for me? Let them take care of everything, putting the money and the jewels in my vault.”
“Hermione, I want to apologies for my behavior over the past seven years. And now, I want to make a proposition to you. I want to hire you to head the Draco Institute. You get to name your own salary for now.”
“What is the Draco Institute?” she asked.
“I don’t know, that is for you to decide. The Malfoy Manor is to become a museum. You will build a big building maybe five or six floors, perhaps 100 meters by 70 meters. Hire the best wizarding historians, researchers, and archeologists. The sign outside might say ‘Draco Institute’ but the real name will be the Draco Institute for Advanced Magical Studies.
“Once the ministry is finished examining and cleaning up my parent’s room you will take over the operation of Malfoy Manor. It will be a museum of wizardry; it will be open to muggles as well as the magical. It is yours to setup and run. Put your office in the Manor for now, but get onto building the new building on the property. And get on hiring the best researchers that you can find. Money is no object. I can pay for whatever you want to build. It does not need to make a profit; I do not expect to make any money on it. I expect it to be best resource for the study of magic on the planet. I’ll not even want to go back there. I will find someplace else to live. Here is my father’s ring.”
Hermione took the ring. Kingsley said, “We will draw up contracts to make it official, if that is what you want, Draco. You will still have time to back out of this if you want.”
“Harry, will you guys come with me, I want to go and see Astoria Greengrass.” Draco held out his hand, and the others held on to it. They apparated to a nice country house on a lake. It was a big house by some standards but was not really all that large or pretentious.
Draco knocked on the door. Angel Greengrass called, “Astoria, Draco is Here.” and then invited them all into the living room. Astoria came down, she was simply and modestly dressed. Draco just sat there and looked at her. He took her hand with tears in his eyes. “You are right; we cannot live in the Manor. I do not know where we will live, but I want your hand in marriage.”
Astoria was flabbergasted. “Draco, what has happened?”
Draco was openly crying now. “Mom and Dad were murdered last night. Two death eaters came in and killed them. Harry here felt the murders in that scar of his. We used to make fun of that, but is real. He and Ron were in the Manor and waking me up before I knew what was happening. The Weasleys took me to their home and there I discovered what a family is supposed to be all about. I want to have a real family with you.”
Angel and Roger Greengrass held on to Draco as if he were their own son. Well now he would be.
Draco recovered himself for a bit. “I will not go back to the Manor. There are literally tons of gold and silver and bags of diamonds and other gems in there. They will be moved to my vault in Gringotts, but the Manor will become a museum, and I have hired Hermione here to manage the property for me. I told her to build the biggest and best institute of advanced magical studies. I’m not sure where I will go tonight but, but, I’d like your hand.” Draco continued to cry.
Harry looked at Roger, then went up to him. “Draco can stay at my place until he can find a place of his own. It will give Astoria a chance to make up her mind. It is better for neither of them to make a decision under this duress.”
Roger nodded, “That is the best way to do it. I could set him up here, but it will be better to let him stay at a neutral place.”
Harry turned to Draco, “You will come to my place tonight. It is a safe place, and will give you a chance to decompress.” Harry took a yellow card and told Draco to put his thumb print on it. It turned green. “That will be your pass to get in and out of Potter Hall.” All of them then floo to Potter Hall.
Leal and Constance greeted Harry back effusively, and asked him where he had been. “Ministry Business, this is Draco Malfoy, his parents were murdered last night. He will be staying here with us for a while.”
“Welcome to Potter Hall Mr. Malfoy. It is time for supper, and we will be eating in the family kitchen, now I am sure that Harry will show you to your room.”
“Are these house elves your parents? They are rather forward.”
“Well yes, the worry about me. I was born here, but then was gone for 18 years, and they did not know what was happening to me. They are protective, but I have told them that they are part of my family and that they are to be free with me and my guests. Let’s take a look around the Hall.”
They went up the grand stairway, and Harry opened a room for them next to his. He then showed him the library. After that they walked around to the Rook. This was the house maybe 300 years ago, but now it is a magical work house. They went up to see the potions floor, and then up to the astronomy floor. On the way to the roof, Harry picked up the telescope and then let Draco take a look around from the Rook. “We call this tower the Rook, because it looks like a chess rook.” Harry put the telescope on its bracket. The pin downstairs was still marking Hogwarts. Instantly the telescope trained out to Hogwarts.
Draco looked through it. “That’s Hogwarts! Look there is quidditch practice going on there. In my last two years I wanted to get away from there so badly, now I would rather be there than anywhere else.”
Harry said, “Yes, I know all about that. That building over there used to be a barn, now it is our gymnasium. Martial arts masters come in every weekday to teach us magical martial arts. It is hard work, but Ron and I are pretty strong wizards now. Between this and the library, we have become quite awesome, if I do say so myself. By the way, I interrogated Avery and Travers and then delivered them to Azkaban. Would you believe that Delores Umbridge is the administrator there? I also put a death charm on them, they cannot leave without someone removing the charm.”
They went back down to the Hall, and entered the family kitchen. A fine family meal was ready for them. Hedwig and Sirius hoped up onto the table for their meal. They had a go over a piece of meat, but Hedwig won that one hands down, then Ginny gave Sirius a separate lump of meat. Ginny had to apparate back to Hogwarts, and she would have to explain herself to McGonagall. That would be no problem. Ron and Hermione would remain here, but she floo briefly to Grimmauld Place to let her elves know where they all were, and that they would be back tomorrow night.
Draco watched Harry and Ron work out in the morning, they had a light lunch, and then retired to the reading room. It was then that Kingsley floo in. He called Ron over, held an ID card up in front of him, his picture appeared on it. Then he gave Ron an Auror’s badge like Harry’s. “Robards controls who enters the academy and who advances to sergeant or lieutenant, but advancement to captain or beyond is only through my office. So now you are a captain, and Robards can go sit on eggs. Read those books, there was I reason why I gave them to Harry. Ron’s badge was number 231.
Harry showed his badge, “Number 18 was my father’s badge. I wasn’t going to show it to you until you had one too. Let Constance shine it up for you and make you a wallet for it.”
Kingsley turned to Draco, “You can stay here until you find a house for your own, and you can floo to the ministry any time you like. My office is always open to you. You should come around on Monday and I’ll go with you to Gringotts to straighten everything out for you. Have you ever been in your father’s vault?”
“No, I have never seen it. He never even took me into Gringotts.”
Harry said, “They used to have this cool railway in there to take you down to the vaults, but last year some crazy kids got in there, raided a vault, and escaped on the back of a dragon. That destroyed the railway. Now they just use elevators like everybody else.”
Kingsley laughed at that one. “And what happened to the dragon?”
Harry answered, “I don’t know. He got away.”
And then Andy and Teddy apparated into the house. Teddy ran up “HAREEEeeeeee!” They went down to the great room, Teddy opened the toy box, the broom was out, and around the hall he flew.
Draco said, “So this is what family is?” There were tears in his eyes again.
“Yeah,” Harry said, “I missed this part too.” And Harry gave Draco a hug.
Draco went to the ministry, got his banking figured out. Gringotts sent a truck and some workers around to the Manor to collect the gold and the jewels. The gold was considerable, but readily fungible, the gems were another story altogether. He could hoard them, in which case they were worth exactly nothing, or he could sell them which would depress the market and he would not get much value for them. Better that he should contact a firm such as DeBeers and at least get wholesale price on them. He also got wizard credit, and muggle checking and credit cards.
He visited Astoria, and together they looked through country houses for sale. Together they looked as some housing in the Exeter area, which was close to several wizard neighborhoods. The settled on a house that was not all that far from Potter Hall although at the time they had no idea where Potter Hall was. The house was listed for 2.5 million pounds, but they got it for 2 million pounds in cash. It was a nice house, not too big and not too small, a nice back yard that backed up on a brook. Actually the same brook that went past Potter Hall about 8 kilometers away. They even set a date to be married. Draco found some stunning rings in his parent’s vault, and gave them to Astoria. Astoria and her parents approved since they would not be living in that great cold manor.
Draco knew that he would not have to work for a living, but he approached Kingsley for a job at the Ministry none the less. He knew that he could not stand being a gentleman of leisure.
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