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The Odd Couple by Helluin
Chapter 4 : Letters
 
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Chapter 4: Letters

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Dear Albus,

It has been a week since Potter has arrived and you should be extremely proud of me. Black is still alive, although I am certain he is so through some kind of miracle. Actually, I believe that it is because of Potter's intervention that the convict has been allowed to live. If we were at Hogwarts, I'd even award the boy points for his efforts. But really Albus, what possessed you to think that this would actually work? If it had just been Potter and me, I would have been able to live with it, but Black is making my life unbearable.

He tried to kill me during our first morning together. I'll admit I fought back. Potter came down stairs just in time to break us apart, which brings me to another question, Albus. Potter has used magic numerable times to disarm Black and me. Why hasn't he gotten a single warning from the ministry? If you reply, which I have no doubt you will, an explanation would be nice. Anyway, every time Black and I are in a room together, hell breaks loose. Is there any sort of mission you can send him on? He's an animagus for Merlin's sake. An animagus that no one knows about. I'm sure you could find some sort of dangerous work for him. Nothing could be as hazardous as what he is doing now. I don't usually plead for things, Albus, but I'm doing it now.

Potter is fine, if you're curious to know. He has stayed out of my way for a majority of our time together, and does a fine job of keeping Black occupied. He is bored, though. If you can Albus, send something for him to do. Some books from the library on quidditch or something would probably make his time a bit more enjoyable. When I started being concerned for Potter's enjoyment level, I do not know and I think maybe I should schedual a meeting with Madam Pomfrey when I get back to Hogwarts. Anyway, maybe when the weather shifts, he'll find something to do outside. The rain has confined him to the in doors but it has not stopped Black. The smell of wet dog has become a lingering scent around the cottage.

Do you know when I can expect the muggle money I sent for a few days ago? We are a bit short on food around here and Potter and I only have wizard coins. The shortage of food is due to the unnatural eating habits of Black. I think being a dog has caused him to pick up unhealthy eating habits and he eats abnormally large amounts of food. I am thankful for one thing, though. It seems Potter has some talent in the kitchen and is able to share the cooking duties with me. Black, it seems, can't even make a sandwich without destroying the kitchen, which is to be expected from a complete idiot like him.

I hope to hear from you soon Albus. If you could send something for Potter to do and maybe even something for Black (maybe some muggle children's coloring crayons and picture books) it would be greatly appreciated. I am getting paid for this, right? If not, you owe me big time. It is only out of the complete respect and faith I have in your decisions and opinions that I am doing this, although, as of right now, my faith in some of your decisions is wavering.

Yours respectively,

S. Snape



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Dear Albus,

Let me thank you again for letting me do this. The last week has been wonderful and I have never had the opportunity to spend so much time with Harry. Right now, my number one priority is to be as much of a Godfather to him as possible. I am finding it increasingly difficult to keep my temper around Snape, though. Okay, so maybe I haven't kept my temper around him at all, but it really makes me wonder why you asked Snape to stay with Harry? There are so many other teachers at Hogwarts who actually care about Harry. Why not send them here?

No matter what Snape may tell you, he is the one who's baiting me. He makes comments and knows perfectly well that I have trouble keeping my temper, especially under such intense circumstances as these. I must say, though, that he has kept his temper around Harry. I know how he treats him usually and he seems to be trying to make this summer as painless as possible for Harry.

By the way, Snape seems to have been able to keep himself occupied but Harry and I don't exactly have much to do. I take walk in my dog form every once in a while, though it has been raining lately so its not as enjoyable as one might think, but if you could send us something to do, it would be nice.

The way Harry is handling this whole situation is really great. James and Lily would be proud. Hell, I'm proud of him. He has kept things between Snape and I at bay and I think we're both alive because of him. I never really realized how mature he is for his age. I have been trying to get him to open up a bit about the tournament. I think he's having a little trouble sleeping because of it but I don't want to force him to talk about anything he's not ready to. Really Albus, he's handling this situation beautifully.

On a side note, I was wondering if you could do me a favor, Albus. It's been years since I've had some Bernie Bott's Every Flavor Beans. Could you send me a few boxes? I'll pay you back when I can. Could you send some Chocolate Frogs as well? Oh, and some Honeydukes chocolate for Harry. And a few dungbombs for Snape. Sorry, just kidding. We don't mind if you decide to add anything extra from Honeydukes. Thanks a million Albus. I hope to hear from you soon.

Yours truly,

Padfoot

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Dear Professor Dumbledore,

You told me to keep you informed on what was happening around here and I am sorry that I didn't write sooner but I've been occupied for the last week. Sirius and Professor Snape are both still alive but they've seriously tried to change that. I'm doing my best to keep Sirius occupied and they don't seem to argue as much when I'm around. I have had to use magic to disarm them sometimes. I'm really sorry that I have. I know the rule but it's the only solution I had at the time.

Other than all that, life here hasn't been so bad. At least it's not as bad as I thought. I really wish it would stop raining. It would be nice to go outside and, as much as I like Sirius, as a dog, he's really starting to smell.

I was wondering if it would be okay to write Hermione and Ron to tell them where I am and that I'm okay. I promised that I would keep in touch with them and they may get worried if I don't write back. The last time I didn't write them, Ron came and took me from the Dursleys. I don't think the Dursley's would appreciate if the Weasleys came to get me and I wasn't there. I'll understand if I can't contact them, but could you tell them what's going on? Just try not to worry Mrs. Weasley too much.

Thank you very much Professor. I mean, for everything. Getting Sirius to come and even for Professor Snape coming. He has been pretty nice to me and he's really not so bad away from school. Just don't tell him I said that. I'll try to write as much as possible.

Yours truly,

Harry Potter

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Dear Severus,

Thank you very much for the letter. I am very glad to know that you and Sirius are alive. I can't express how thankful I am that you are doing this. Don't worry; you are getting paid very handsomely for this. I know it's not the ideal summer for you but we are preventing other more serious things from happening by doing this.

You asked me why Harry hasn't gotten any warning from the ministry. I will tell you. I set up some wards around the cottage and even some minor wards around the entire village that keep the ministry from knowing that someone is performing underage magic. They are there for two reasons. Firstly, if any thing happens while Harry is there, it gives him the chance to defend himself. As you know, an underage wizard's magic is significantly less powerful anywhere else than at school. If there is a clear threat, Harry will be able perform powerful spells. Lastly, the ministry will be able to find him if he uses his wand. I knew that placing you with Black would be reason enough to place those wards. And I must tell you that this is the only mission Sirius will have for the summer. He needs sometime with Harry. It's been fourteen years since he's been able to spend more than an hour with him at a time. Harry needs him.

By the way, Severus, having some concern for Harry is nothing to be scared of. I think you're finally realizing that he is James' son, not James himself, and that that is no reason to dislike him. Harry is a very smart and mature boy, much like you were in school. I think you two could find much in common if you would take the time to get to know him.

Anyway, I have a couple more letters to write. You should also receive a package along with this letter. I have sent you your muggle money. Take Harry with you when you go into town. He can explain the money to you as well as get out of the house for a while. Sirius can accompany you as well. He'll probably go anyway. Just make sure he's in dog form. I have also included the books you requested. Madam Pince would not let me take some from the library so I bought these books. Tell Harry he can keep them. There are a few from your own library I thought you might like as well as some magazines for Sirius. There are also a few wizard games in there for all three of you. Play nice!

Please keep me updated on everything. I look forward to hearing from you again.

Albus

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Dear Padfoot,

There is no need to thank me for anything. I really should be the one thanking you for agreeing to stay with Harry. It should give him a welcome change for the summer. I am very glad to know how Harry is handling everything. It's a pity that I can't award house points over the summer but I'll take everything into consideration when I select house prefects.

When it comes to Severus, my advice is not to take the bait he is giving you. I know about your temper and what it has led you to do in the last twenty years. If all else fails, leave the room. You can take a walk outside. I know you love that "lovable stray" act of yours. Although, something has been brought to my attention. Severus and Harry having been complaining about a certain "wet dog" smell in the house. Now, you wouldn't know anything about that, would you Snuffles?

It's great that you're making an effort to get Harry to talk about the tournament. Just take it slow. You have the whole summer to talk about it. Let him go at a pace he's comfortable at. I would like you to keep me informed on his sleeping habits. If he is still having trouble sleeping by the next time you write me, let me know about it. I could get Severus to make something for him or a similar solution like that.

You should get a package with this letter. It has all the sweets you requested but do try and eat something leafy every once and a while. And don't worry about paying me back. You being there with Harry and Severus is payment enough.

Hope to hear from you soon.

Albus

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Dear Harry,

Thank you for the update at the cottage. I received similar letters from Severus and your Godfather, but I have come to believe that yours is probably the least biased account of everything.

You don't need to apologize for using magic in the cottage. In fact, I have made it so you are able to use magic as much as you would like. It would be best if you used as little magic outside the cottage though. Wards around it are allowing you to use your wand.

I don't see anything wrong in writing Ron and Hermione about your situation. Please do remind them that you will not be able to leave but writing back and forth is perfectly fine.

Both of your guardians wrote me and told me that you are being extremely helpful and mature around the house. I am sorry you have sort of become the peacekeeper between the two, but they both tell me that you are handling the situation extremely well. I am very proud of you.

Hope to hear from you soon.

Professor Dumbledore

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