Blood is Thicker

The Dealings of Running A Castle

DISCLAIMER – I took my ebony wand and gave it a flick and said Accio Robert Pattinson and Daniel Radcliffe. Suffice to say that didn't work. I tried again and said Accio, the rights to Harry Potter. That didn't work either. So that means that I do not own anything except the plot of this story.

DISCLAIMER 2 – some of the character will be OOC. This is because I do not feel that I should stick to what Rowling's did. If I wanted to be sued, I would plagiarize her work. So the character attitudes will be to MY liking.

PLEASE – Do not flame me because you do not like the story. I humbly ask that if this story is not your cup of tea to switch to coffee or soda. Flaming me due to slash, stats, or otherwise things you don't like, will not do any good. Also, I humbly ask that if you do pass an insult to do it at me and not my readers. It is unfair to those that are actually enjoying the story to be bashed because you don't like it. Thanks for your consideration.

Chapter 17 – The Dealings of Running a Castle

The entire magical community worked together to set the trap that would capture the notorious Albus Dumbledore. Goblins were sent to patrol the grounds of Hogwarts as were Aurors. Voldemort was also seen at the castle for days at a time working with Harry to improve not only the wards, but the overall experience to be had in the castle.

The days turned into one another at an astonishing fast pace. It wasn't long before the new school year was upon them. Harry and Minerva were waiting patiently in the Great Hall for the students to come in. Those that had been there the year before knew that Harry was going to be a part time Headmaster until he graduated from school. That Harry only had a few classes a week was not known to many. Harry had kindly asked the parents of the students to keep some of his personal life a secret.

Finally the first years were brought in by Severus. It was with great patience that Harry sat through it and clapped politely for each and every student that was sorted into the different houses. Hermione was sitting in her spot at the Gryffindor table watching her husband with interest. Things had happened during the summer that made things for the Potters a whole lot easier.

When the students were all sorted, Minerva stood up and waited until everyone quieted down and gave her their undivided attention.

"Before we begin our feasts, I have a few announcements to make," she proclaimed. "The first is that Harry Potter will be Headmaster of the school even though he is still taking three classes. He passed most of his other courses with high grades and at NEWT or University levels. Therefore, please do NOT be alarmed if you see him sitting in Potions, COMC, or Runes. He still wants to obtain a NEWT in all three of those subjects. We all agreed that since he was still of an age to do so, that it wouldn't be a problem for him to sit his remaining NEWTS despite his status."

"This DOESN'T mean that you can disrespect him while he is still in those classes," stated Severus speaking next. "He has the full backing of each and every professor here. Though he is taking these classes, he is STILL the Headmaster and able to dole out detentions, punishments, or point deductions or awards should the need arise. To try and pull something on him due to his age or status, will have dire effects on the one attempting it. While in those classes, he may notice something that we professor may miss."

"We have made much progress last year with the changes that Lord and Lady Potter implemented," said Filius speaking next. "It is with great pleasure that we announce that there will be only one staff change this year. It is with great honor that we introduce Lord Slytherin as your new DADA professor. He may have a dark background, but we felt that he was the best one to teach you how to fight the dark."

"Let it be known that I DON'T care what house you are in," said Tom speaking next. "Just because I am a Slytherin descendant doesn't mean that I will favor those that are in that house. You are here to learn Defense from me as well as a small overture of the Dark Arts. Just because you wear silver and green doesn't mean I am going to be your friend. Just because you were scarlet and gold doesn't mean I will badger you or pick on you for it. You are ALL students who need to learn. I have full confidence that you will all learn something from me. There is still a major threat out there by the name of Albus Dumbledore. He will not hesitate to make sure you pay for his preconceived notions of wrongs done to him. I am here to teach you how to counter those attacks. Any misbehavior in my class will result in you being thrown out with severe consequences."

"I will be assisting where and when I can," explained Harry standing and speaking next. "I feel that it's prudent for me to work with the staff in between my classes so that I can get a feel of what it's like to be in a classroom as an instructor rather than a student. I'm doing this so that I can fill in for any professor that needs a substitute due to illness or other emergencies. Like my colleagues, I will not look at your house insignia. As many of you know, I don't care what house you are in due to the friendships I have built in each and every house. Tutoring for the different subjects will continue this year as they did last year. Those that are interested in being a tutor, please turn your names into your Head of House so that we can have things set up like we did last year."

There was a general excited feel in the air and Harry smiled as he looked at his wife and gave her a nod. She stood up and walked up to the Head Table. When she was ready, she addressed the school.

"Like my husband, I still have classes that I am going to go for a NEWT in," she explained. "In the middle of all my classes, I am studying the laws and such to assist in making our world a better place for all witches and wizards regardless of blood status. With that being said, I have people from the Ministry working with the school. We still have a serious threat out and about in the form of one Albus Dumbledore. You will see the Goblins of Gringotts around the school as well. Please stay out of their way as they are here to protect you from the threat. Aurors are also going to be working in shifts around the castle for the same reason."

"All we ask is that you do what you are here for," said Harry speaking up once again. "You are here to learn and to have fun. Leave the troubles of the adult world to those of us that are in a position to take care of it. You shouldn't have to worry about it until you turn of age and have graduated. With that being said, please enjoy your meal. Don't be alarmed if you find the professors sitting at the tables with you from time to time. I know I will be."

With a laugh from the assembled teachers and students, Harry lifted his hands and food appeared on the tables. With a smile, he joined Hermione at the Gryffindor table with Luna, Draco, Neville, Hannah, and Susan. Chatter broke out around the area as the other professors all sat with the students as well and enjoyed their meal. When the meal was done, Harry stood once more.

"In the rush for Lady Potter and me to learn everything that we could, we neglected to appoint a Head Boy and Head Girl," he stated. "So therefore, I have the privilege of announcing that this year's Head Girl will be Katie Bell of Gryffindor. We did have some problems with the post of Head Boy as the ones eligible for the position leaves something a little to be desired. Therefore, we are going to make Draco Malfoy the Head Boy for this year. If he does a good job, then he will retain that post through next year as well. I was told by the Heads of House that each house has their prefects and such, so please make sure that each of you announce yourselves to your dorm so that the younger years know who to turn to if they need help. My replacement for sixth year prefect is Neville Longbottom. Lady Potter's replacement will be Padma Patil. Thank you for your attention, but I think it's time for you all to head to bed."

The students all stood and made their way to their prefects. Harry had a smile on his face as he watched the Great Hall empty. Things were definitely going to be for the better this year. When all of the students were done, Harry turned to the others.

"The goblins told me earlier that everything is set up for the trap for Dumbledore," he informed them. "Now we just need some kind of bait to lure the old fool to the castle. We don't know what we can use for that. It has to be something that will spark his interest but at the same time, will not put the students in danger."

"We will need to think on it and get back to you," said Tom. "I agree that we need something that will spark his interest, but like you, I don't want to see the students getting hurt because of it. Between Lord Potter and I, we have managed to create a ward that will automatically lock the school down in case of an emergency. We couldn't have done it without the knowledge of Lady Potter. Immediately upon an attack, the doors will shut and nothing will be able to get back in without the code word. Only Lord Potter can bring the school out of lockdown once it has started."

"I have one idea," murmured Harry thoughtfully. "What if I decide to use the Elder wand as bait? I can place an ad in the paper that states that I am going to put it on display in the entryway of the castle so that all can see the fabled wand that has had many names over the centuries. We can do a whole history lesson on the wand and have Mr. Ollivander here to give it. We can even have outsiders come in to view something that is a legend in our world. I can even put my cloak on display as it is also one of the Deathly Hallows."

"Why not put all three Hallows on display?" asked Hermione. "If you are going to go that far, you just as soon put the third one on display as well. Even though it no longer is a host for the soul shard, the Resurrection Stone in the ring still works. We can have someone read the story from the Tales of Beatle the Bard. It will make for a great plan to lure the idiot here if he thinks he can get his hands on these three famous items."

"That is actually a brilliant idea," stated Minerva. "This way, we can ensure that he comes to the castle as he would do anything in his power to get that wand back in his grasp. Add in the fact that he will want the items that are rumored to bring the bearer power over death itself and you have a foolproof plan already in the making."

"Not that he will be able to use it," stated Harry with a malicious grin. "I am the true master of that wand and nothing will get it to break its allegiance to me. I would love to see the look on his face when he realizes that he has been outsmarted once more. I would also like to point out that though they no longer act as host for the soul shards, we also have the relics of the founders that we can put on display for the public as well for a while. This might lure him out if he thinks he can take weapons away from me."

"We will get the chance to see," remarked Hermione before she changed the subject. "Minerva, Harry and I were wondering if we could have our ceremony here on Halloween. We figure that it's time to make it official so that people will stop thinking they have a chance to get one or the other of us. There are still those out there that feel because they don't know about a ceremony that one or both of us is still on the market."

"I see no reason to deny you your request," said Minerva thoughtfully. "It is your castle after all. We can cancel classes for the day and make the most of it."

"Thanks Aunt Minerva," said Harry with a blush. "Severus, I was wondering if you would stand along with Neville as my best man. Hermione wants Minerva and Luna to stand with her and I would be honored to have you with me on this special day."

"I'm delighted that you asked me," said Severus. "The honor would be mine to stand for and with you on your special day. Who are you going to get to perform the ceremony?"

Both Potters looked at Tom. He stared back at them for a moment before he nodded his head in agreement.

"Why me?" he asked. "I have no official capacity in Britain or anywhere else. I am just your DADA professor and new friend."

"You are also Lord Slytherin," said Hermione wisely. "You have the most powerful bloodline other than Harry in the country or world with your heritage. Being the only other member of the famous founders alive would give the wizarding population something to think about. Now that the two of you are allies rather than enemies, the world will have some hope that we can come out of the darkness with our eyes wide open rather than half shut."

"Very well," replied the older wizard. "However, you both will owe me for this. You are slowly tarnishing my reputation to that as a person who is light and fluffy. I will not have it."

"Oh course not," snickered Harry knowing that Tom was joking. "We wouldn't dream of taking away your title of the most notorious Dark Lord in history. We will even make you a plaque for the entrance of the Great Hall. 'Here teaches Voldemort. He was once the Dark Lord and now he is a fluffy bunny.' That should get people flocking to see you."

"WHY YOU LITTLE…" stated Tom pulling out his wand and firing small hexes at a running Harry and Hermione. "I AM GOING TO GET YOU FOR THAT. STAND STILL POTTER SO THAT I CAN PROPERLY HEX YOU. I'LL SHOW YOU A FLUFFY BUNNY YOU IMPERTINENT WELP."

Filius and Minerva were wheezing due to lack of oxygen for laughing so hard. Pomona and Severus weren't much better, but were able to help the older professors to stand and guide them out of the hall.

The next morning, Harry attended Potions with about ten other students that managed to get the grade to enter the class. If they thought Severus was tough before, it was nothing compared to what he was now.

"Now that you are in your NEWT Potions lessons, the potions we will be making will be harder and more dangerous," he explained. "It is in your best interest to PAY ATTENTION to what you are doing and not goof off and make a mess of things. Before you all is some cauldrons with different potions in it. I would like for each of you to walk forward and take a sheet of this stack of parchment. You will notice that each cauldron is numbered. I want you all to write in the correct potion by its looks, smell, and texture. The person who has the most correct identifications will earn fifty points for their house. As there are representatives of each house, it is possible for any house to get the points. In the event of a tie, all those that have the most correct will receive the points. Please begin."

Everyone stood up and took their sheet from Severus. While Harry couldn't technically earn points, he could still earn approval from the strict Potions Master. He walked up to the first cauldron and had no trouble identifying the Polyjuice Potion. Next he identified Amortentia. From there, he filled in the different potions. It was the last one that was confusing the young man. He was sure it was Felix Felicis, but he wasn't sure what it was doing in the class. This was one potion that would have to be watched as many of the students who had bad habits would love to get their hands on something like this. Severus noticed him standing there and approached.

"Is everything alright Mr. Potter?" he asked. "You seemed troubled by this potion. Are you having trouble identifying it?"

"No," said Harry thoughtfully. "I'm sure it's Felix Felicis, but it will need to be hidden once we are done with class as I don't want some of our misfits getting their hands on it or some of these other potions. We don't know what kind of trouble we will have with the old fool and I don't want any of these potions to end up in his hands helping him in any way."

"You have my word that they will all be dealt with once class is over with," promised Severus. "If you are done with your sheet, I would like to grade them all quickly so that you can all have them back."

Harry handed Severus is test and walked back to his cauldron. Severus quickly looked over the test and handed the papers back to everyone.

"The two people who were able to get all of these potions correct were Mr. Potter and Mr. Malfoy," he told the class. Both were able to get ALL of them correct. Fifty points is awarded to Slytherin as a reward for his knowledge. As I can't give the Headmaster house points, I will just congratulate him on a job well done. We will be brewing each of these potions this year. Some of you will do wonderful at it and others will struggle. Time will tell who is in what category."

With that, Severus went into an explanation as to what each potion was likely to do both good and bad with the students. Everyone in the class took notes carefully as they were sure that if there came a time in their future that they needed these potions, that they would want to learn how to brew them.

When class was done, Harry headed to Charms so that he could sit with Filius as a way of learning how to run a class. He listened carefully to the older professor as he worked with the older students on NEWT subjects. From there, he did the same with some of the other professors. Each time he sat in, the professor just nodded to him and then ignored him. This was just what Harry wanted. When he was done for the day, he went to his office to handle some of the paperwork that needed his immediate attention. He worked on his homework and got it finished as well. Things were going well so far. He just hoped that it would continue to do so.

The days turned into weeks. Harry was able to fall into a routine as had Hermione. Both were blessed to have the support and comfort of the teachers when they were working. Both were still getting high grades in all of the classes they were taking. Harry made it a point to sit in as many classes during the days as he could so that he could see what each year level was like with each professor. He did this to ensure that he would be able to comfortably cover any class that needed him in case of an emergency.

During a class in DADA, Tom had asked him to assist him with a duel so that they could show the students what it was like to have two powerful wizards doing battle. Neither wizard was aiming to hurt, but they let the power be seen and known to the students so that they understood that when you are battling for your life, you have to know what to use and how to do so. When the lesson ended, Harry agreed to work with Tom all week so that he could assist him with the lessons. This was quickly followed with other professors asking Harry to give examples of his power to the students when it came to their lessons as well.

It was during one of the lessons for COMC that Harry had to act in his role as Headmaster. Hagrid was working with some of the more dangerous creatures when Harry noticed that one of the students was not particularly behaving in the class.

"Excuse me Professor Hagrid," called Harry during a sixth year class. "I have to make a small example for a moment."

"Be my guest Harry," said Hagrid waving a hand to him. "What did you need to say?"

"I'm watching you teach the class about hippogriffs," he stated. "However, Mr. Smith here is insisting that this is a waste of his time. Therefore, as you are busy working with those students that are actually interested in learning about these magnificent creatures, I would like to utilize my position as Headmaster to dole out a small lesson of my own."

Hagrid sat back and waited with a smile on his face. This was part of the reason why Harry was going through the different lessons with the different professors. He wanted to watch and learn while at the same time get comfortable with what he was doing as head of the school.

"Mr. Smith," said Harry addressing the student. "We have had this lesson before, but due to circumstances, we had to move this particular magical creature to NEWT level. If you care to remember, it was Draco Malfoy that got injured the last time due to not paying attention in class. Mr. Malfoy. Please remind us what happened in that class."

"I didn't pay attention to Professor Hagrid," said Draco quickly catching on to what Harry was going to do. "Therefore, I insulted Buckbeak and he ended up sending me to the infirmary with a torn open arm. While Madam Pomfrey was able to fix it up in a snap, it was embarrassing, and almost cost Professor Hagrid his job and Buckbeak his life."

"Correct," said Harry. "Ten point to Slytherin for your explanation and another ten for your respect. Now Mr. Smith, you are known to have a bad attitude towards others of the other houses. You have always insulted people due to you being inattentive and uncooperative. Today it will end. With Professor Hagrid's permission, I am deducting twenty points from Hufflepuff for you inability to pay attention. I am also deducting ten more for trying to encourage others to do the same. You will serve detention with Professor Hagrid for one week where you will learn how to care for these magnificent beings. Is that acceptable to you Professor Hagrid?"

"Yes Headmaster," stated Hagrid with a smile in his voice. "That ought to work out nicely."

"The next time you even remotely cause trouble in this class, you will be dismissed permanently from the class and you will NOT receive a NEWT in this subject," stated Harry pointedly. "This class is not a free for all. This is NOT an easy grade and if you want to earn a NEWT, then you will work for it. Let this lesson be learned for everyone in hopes that you take this class seriously. We have dangerous creatures out there that can be the cause of injury and death. We are here to learn how to prevent these situations."

"Thank you Headmaster," said Hagrid politely. "Smith, you can meet me after dinner for two hours each night for the next seven days."

Zacharias went to protest, but caught the look on Harry's face and thought twice. Harry waved to Hagrid who happily continued with his lesson.

"Nice job Harry," whispered Hermione. "That ought to teach him a lesson. Don't forget to speak to Professor Sprout about the incident as well. As she is his head of house, she can assist in making sure that he does what he is supposed to."

Harry nodded as he walked forward to demonstrate how to approach a hippogriff. Hagrid beamed at him as he and Hermione showed the class what it meant to be proactive in class. Even Draco worked hard to show that some things were worth the time and effort.

There was even the rumor that he was dating someone from Hufflepuff.

The days went by and the professors of the school got together to start setting up the bait. Harry cordoned off an area where he set all three Hallows together in a group. In another section, he placed the repaired parts of the Diadem of Ravenclaw, the Locket of Slytherin, the Cup of Hufflepuff, and the Sword of Gryffindor. He made sure that each of these groups had wards that couldn't be breached by anyone other than him and Tom as he placed wards spoken in Parseltongue on them. The Goblins took it one step further and placed a guard on each set of relics in six hour shifts to protect the items.

"Harry, I sent a letter to the Daily Prophet describing what we are doing with both the Relics and the Hallows," said Minerva. "We want it to get out that we are hosting an open house on each of the items for people to come and view them. I have also taken the liberty of contacting Batilda Bagshot and Albion Ollivander so that they can come and give history regarding the objects in question."

"Thanks Aunt Minerva," exclaimed Harry happily. "That's a load of my shoulders. Now I see why the old goat made you the Deputy. You are an invaluable individual that makes my life so much easier. Add in Uncle Severus to the mix and you have a team of leaders that knows how to get things done. Aunt Pomona and Uncle Filius are no slouches in the departments either. All of you have my ultimate and endearing gratitude for all that you do to make sure that my time here as Headmaster and student is memorable."

"We wouldn't have it any other way," said Severus. "As per your usual standards, you are obtaining an Outstanding in each of the three classes you are taking. Your grades are only matched by a few other students. Your wide and Draco are a match for you, but they are not getting all outstandings like you are. In fact, I had to give Draco a detention for ruining a potion due to not paying attention."

"I saw that," stated Harry with a worried look. "It isn't like Draco to lose it like he did. I hope that you had him checked by someone. He usually gives me a run for my money in potions."

"He is fine," admitted Severus. "He was paying more attention to Hannah Abbot than his potion is all. While I admire him for dating a Hufflepuff, I will not let him lose it due to not concentrating in class."

Harry laughed at this as he went about his normal duties around the school. Severus and Minerva were with him while he did things that needed to be done with their input and advice on the matter. Hagrid walked in and was looking rather disgruntled.

"What's wrong Hagrid?" asked Harry looking at his large friend curiously. "Has something happened with Smith that we need to know about?"

"You could say that," stated Hagrid. "The boy refuses to do anything that I tell him to do. He even called me a half blood oaf. I docked points from him and he laughed at me. I don't know what to do with him."

"Zacharias Smith," called Harry's magically enhanced voice. "You are to report to the Transfiguration Classroom immediately. If you are not there in ten minutes, you will find yourself in serious trouble."

"Come with us Hagrid," stated Severus. "We will help you deal with this nonsense and get this all taken care of before the night is out. It's time that people stop looking at one's bloodline and start understanding that things will be done differently now that Dumbledore is no longer in charge of this castle and what's happening in it."

"Is there something that I can do to help?" asked Tom as he came around the corner and met with the group. "I couldn't help but me curious as to what's going on. Pomona said to tell you that she will meet you in the classroom as well. She was going to go and get Filius on her way there."

"We need to break some bad habits that are starting to crop up," said Harry. "It isn't anything serious yet, but it can blow out of proportion if we don't deal with this soon. It's time that people stop looking at ones lineage and start looking at that person as a human being."

The group of professors met in Minerva's classroom and sat down. Zacharias entered the room and saw everyone assembled before him and started to panic. Harry shut the door with a flick of his hand and gestured for the sixth year to sit.

"Do you really think that we are so inept as teachers and leaders of this establishment that we wouldn't take an interest in a student who is not only being disruptive in class, but is also refusing to do what he is told?" asked Harry in a dangerous voice pausing while Hermione entered and sat with the group. "You were specifically told to do what Hagrid told you to do during detention. Not only did you NOT do what you were told, you ended up insulting a professor of this school."

"The time for a new way of doing things in Hogwarts started last year," said Severus coolly. "You were there when the decisions were made and the ideas and ideals were decided upon. For whatever reason, last year, you did what was expected and behaved in a less obnoxious way. This year for some reason, you think it is ok to revert back to your normal self. This is UNACCEPTABLE."

"We are going to have to take up your punishment a notch," said Minerva in a dangerous voice. "You are hereby relieved of your detentions with Hagrid. You will serve a week's worth of detentions with me. When that week is done, you will serve another will Professor Snape, then with Professor Flitwick, Professor Sprout, and finally ending with a week with Professor Slytherin."

"On top of all of that, you are hereby banned from Hogsmeade for the rest of the year," stated Pomona furiously. "You will be too busy to be able to go. I'll be sending a letter home to your parents explaining the circumstances behind this."

"You are also banned from any extracurricular activities for the next two months," added Harry. "You will also be serving a week of detention with me. You are hereby on probation. If you cause just one more bit of trouble, you will be suspended for a term. Your attitude in the past is not going to continue into the future. You are hereby expelled from Professor Hagrid's COMC classes and you will NOT be getting a NEWT in the subject."

"You will write a two thousand word essay of apology to Professor Hagrid on why you shouldn't have treated him the way you did," said Filius speaking next. "You will turn it into me and I will read it. If I find that it is unacceptable, you will continue to redo it until I'm satisfied."

"Tomorrow during breakfast, you will apologize publicly to Professor Hagrid or I will make you sorry you were born," hissed Tom angrily. "You are no longer a child. You should know better than to insult someone that could smash you with one hit should he be so inclined to do so. You have been warned about your attitude by me before. Make no mistake that you will NOT get the opportunity to do so again."

"Should you continue with this attitude, you will be expelled from this school and your wand will be snapped," interjected Hermione. "Being a bully will no longer be tolerated in our society. If we can get people like Draco Malfoy to be polite to those that are less fortunate than him, then there should be no reason why you can't follow with everyone else."

"You can't do that to me," said Zacharias suddenly. "Your punishments are too harsh for something small like calling someone a name. My parents won't let you get away with this. They will pull me from this school and I will go somewhere else. You will regret trying this with me. You will be punished for this Potter."

"By all means," said Harry waving him back. "Let's get your parents here and make that call. Beauxbatons and Durmstrang are NOT accepting transfer students at this time. This means that at most, you will have to go to Egypt for schooling or be home schooled. As you are being so uncooperative, we can take your punishment one step further. When your parents get here, they can take you home for the next two months. When you get back, you can attempt to get caught up with your schoolwork. If you can't and you fail, you will repeat your sixth year all over again."

"For the record Mr. Smith, "said Minerva. "Your threats of what your parents will do mean nothing to any of us. I happen to know that your father will be furious with you. You have been nothing but rude since the term began and you will not be getting away with it. I have a note that came from your parents that stated that any punishment due to your problems with your mouth were acceptable to them. Therefore, they will not be happy to learn that their son got suspended for two months within the first few weeks of school."

"We have other things to do around the school," said Harry looking at her. "Will you deal with all of this or do you want me to handle it?"

"I will take care of it," said Minerva. "Hermione and I can deal with this while you go with Severus to handle the reports for the day. Not to worry, as Mr. Smith will be gone within the hour. There will be no repeat of tonight again. OH and Mr. Smith, once you return to Hogwarts, your other punishments will be waiting for you."

Harry gave one last glare to the mouthy boy and he left the room followed by Severus. Things were definitely changing in Hogwarts. The time for bullying was over.

AUTHOR'S NOTE – I was going to end the story with this chapter, but I think I can go one more with this. We are going to capture Dumbledore in the next chapter. Thanks for the support.

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