** Sorry for the longer wait this time. The helpful muse that used to be here for Harry P., went on vacation. It finally came back and is going to stay, I hope. :) Please review, it helps the muse stick around!
Harry Potter Ch. 16:
"Harry! I didn't think your Dad was going to let you come. You've been held prisoner for so long!" Ron declares as Harry walks into the dorm room.
"I wasn't a prisoner, Ron. I can do certain things just not hang out here in the dorm."
"Well, that's past us, now. He's here, Ron! Let's enjoy it while we are all together again." Neville replies grinning at Harry.
"We're not altogether just yet, Nev. I don't see Draco. I know Uncle Sev said he could come. I thought he'd beat me in getting here."
"I saw him earlier and he said he's going to be a little late. He has to do something first and if anyone asks, we are to say he is here with us."
"What does he have to do, Nev? Did he say? It's going to be hard to prove he's here if someone comes in the room looking for him!"
"I'll just say he's in the loo, Harry. No one will check to see if he's really in there." Ron assures his friend.
"That's a good plan. We'll do it but, let's hope no one comes looking and he gets here soon."
"Well, while we wait let's play chess. Harry, you and I can play and Neville can play the winner."
"Ron! You always beat me in Wizard's Chess. Let's play something else. How about Exploding Snap? All of us can play that together." Harry suggests.
"Fine. We'll go with what you want. Technically, you're the guest here. My Mum says I have to humor the guests and do what they want to do."
"Thanks Ron, that makes me feel really welcome. You can humor me some more and let Nev and me win, if you will." Harry says grinning.
"Not Bloody Likely, Harry! I play to win. Grab the cards and let's go, mate!"
"Ron, you are lucky we are alone. Someone would report you for swearing if we weren't."
"I'm not going to be swearing where someone else can hear me. I'm not wanting to repeat the punishment your Dad dished out the last time, Harry."
"What punishment was that, Ron? I don't know anything about other people's punishments, just my own."
"You mean, he never tells you about it when he gives out punishments?" Ron asks suspiciously.
"Nope. The one and only time I questioned someone's punishment, Dad told me it was not my business. When I pestered him about it he said since I was so interested in punishment, he had a proposition for me. I could find out by taking the same punishment he gave out plus get another punishment on my bum. That dried me up on the questions really fast."
"Hmm, interesting. I wouldn't have taken that proposition either! Who knows what punishment he originally gave out! It could have been something horrible like scrubbing out toilets or something like that! Well let's play cards." Ron answers.
"RON, you can't leave me questioning. What did he do to you for swearing?"
"I thought you didn't want to be punished for asking." Ron smirks at his friend.
"I can't ask Dad but I can ask you, since he's not here to tell me not to. Now out with it!"
"All right, he took me into the boys loo and made me hold soap in my mouth for a whole two minutes! Then I had to serve detention with Professor McGonagall for three hours. She made me sweep up the Great Hall and polish silverware! I haven't let slip a 'bloody flaming hell" since then."
"Dad despises swearing. He has used the mouth lathering spell on me too! I guess we'd better watch what we say around him." Harry says grinning and dealing the cards.
After the fourth game of snap, the bedroom door opens and Draco walks in.
"My stars, Drake, you look done in. You having to run from Jeremy again?" Harry asks.
"No, not that. I'm starving though. Let's go to the kitchens and get something."
"I'm under strict orders not to leave the dorm, Draco. You all go and bring me back something sweet." Harry answers as Ron and Neville stand to leave.
"You mean Uncle Sirius won't even let you go to the kitchens?"
"It's after curfew, Draco. Two hours past actually. So, no, I can't go anywhere. You aren't allowed out after curfew either, if I recall. Are you going to risk getting caught?"
"No, I guess I wasn't thinking. I'm famished though! I haven't eaten since lunch!" Draco replies flopping down on the bed. "Can you summon some food for us, Harry?"
"Draco, think! What would it look like to see food being air lifted through the castle? It doesn't pop in instantly the way a broom or some object would. Besides that, you know I'm under a no magic rule unless supervised by an adult. So, No, I can't. I can call Dobby and get him to bring us something."
Seeing Ron grinning at them, Draco asks crossly "What are you finding so amusing?"
"You two squabble just like me and my brothers! You act like brothers with each other!"
"Yeah, well we're not brothers, just cousins. Harry's Dad is really my cousin but I call him Uncle Sirius because he's grown."
"Guys? Hush so I can call Dobby, will ya?" Harry asks waiting for the two boys to stop talking.
Seconds later, Dobby appears in the dorm room, popping in from the kitchen.
"Master Harry Potter- Black! What can Dobby do for young master?" Dobby gushes, causing the other boys to snicker.
"Umm, please don't call me Master Harry Potter- Black. It's just Harry. We wondered if you could bring us something to eat. We're hungry."
"Certainly Master Harry. Dobby will bring anything. Ice cream, butterbeer, chips, cake, pie, meatpies,..." Dobby rattles off a list before Harry calls him to stop.
"Dobby, stop please. I'll have a hamburger plate with the chocolate milkshake. The others will tell you what they want."
Listening to the boys, Dobby nods his head from side to side. "Young masters know that they will be eating fine with Dobby." He says popping out of the room.
"Will he really bring all of the things we told him?" Neville asks.
Before Harry can answer, Dobby pops back in carrying a loaded tray.
"Hamburger meal with shake for Master Harry, Pizza and shakes for Masters Draco and Ron, chicken pie with vegetables and lemonade for Master Neville and treacle tart for all. Will there be anything else young masters need of Dobby?"
"No, that's all. Thanks, Dobby."
"Now that we've all eaten, there's some news I need to tell all of you. Before I do, Harry needs to cast a muffliato spell so no one else can overhear us."
"Why don't you do it Draco?" Ron asks.
"It's a very advanced spell and I don't have the power he has. Besides, he doesn't even need his wand to do it and I would. My wand is locked in my Dad's quarters. He caught me practicing something he had forbidden me to do and took it away. I can get it back Monday for classes but not until then. Don't ask me what it was because I won't tell!"
While Draco and Ron are talking, Harry walks to the dorm room door. Closing his eyes, he chants softly while running his hands up and across the door and doorframe.
"Alright Draco, I've cast Muffliato on the door and the room. No one but us can hear you. Anyone who tries to listen in will just hear a buzzing in their ears instead of us. Now tell us the big secret! Why are you so crabby tonight anyway?" Harry asks, briefly rubbing his head. It aches some after his concentration for the spell.
"Hagrid stopped me on my way to the Great Hall for supper tonight. He told me to come with him as he had something important to show me. Guys, he has the baby dragons and something else too. He also has a baby hippogriff in his hut. Hagrid said he needs all of us to help him tonight. We're to come down at eleven and help him by carrying one of the cages. We are to go to the Astronomy tower with the cage and wait there. I'm just worn out from the worry about being caught, I guess, Harry."
"Why do we need to wait? What's going to happen?" Neville asks uncertainly.
"He didn't say, Nev." Draco replies giving Harry a side look.
"We can't all go traipsing out after curfew! One of us needs to stay here just in case someone comes by. I'll be the lookout here." Neville tells his friends.
"Alright but you must NOT open the door to anyone but one of us. I'll put a locking spell on it so no one can get in. If one of our Dads or even another professor came to check on us and caught on to what we are doing..." Harry stops talking and just shakes his head.
"Yes, if my Dad found out about this, he'd probably ground me for months!" Draco adds.
"We can use my invisibility cloak! I keep it up here in my trunk. Dad doesn't know I took it back after he put it up in his closet. I got caught with it when I wasn't supposed to be out and he confiscated it. About three weeks ago, I sneaked in and took it while he was in class. I brought it here to hide it." Harry tells his friends.
"That's a good thing, Harry. We're going to need something to keep us hidden. We can't just walk about holding a large cage with a dragon in it! We'd be sure to get caught! Doesn't Hagrid know dragons are not permitted in Hogwarts?" Ron asks.
"He's the expert on Magical Creatures so I'm sure he knows this fact, Ron." Draco answers with a grin at Harry.
"You said there were three animals. We'll take one, Hagrid, I assume, will take one. Who is going to take the third?" Harry asks Draco.
"Ron's brothers were there when I went to visit. I'm guessing, but maybe the twins are going to help too."
"That's five boys and a giant smuggling illegal animals into the castle!" Harry says shaking his head despairingly. "How, in Merlin's name, are we to keep this a secret? I only have one invisibility cloak and it isn't going to hide Hagrid, five boys and three caged animals!"
"We'll do it, Harry. There aren't going to be many people up and about at midnight even on Saturday. We'll just have to watch for the night patrol. Who is on night patrol tonight? I hope it's Professor Flitwick. He's not as fast on his feet so we could possibly outrun him if we needed to." Ron tells his friends.
"Yes, that's right, we could. Let's get some sleep now so we can be alert when we need to." Harry replies, stretching out on his bed.
While the boys are busy planning their secret adventure, Severus has joined Sirius for a quiet dinner.
"I can't get over how quiet it is tonight. I didn't think our two boys were that noisy, but without them around, it's very peaceful. I'd forgotten how nice it was to eat a meal and have a glass of wine. I don't drink around Draco. Lucius was a big drinker and became even more cruel when drinking. I don't want to remind my son of his former life, if I can help it. Your cleansing of his memory has helped tremendously with his anger, but there are so many reminders around he still gets upset at times."
"It is nice to have a child free evening isn't it? It hasn't been easy for either of us to adapt from single living to being a single Dad. Do you long for a new Mum for Draco?"
"No, not especially. I think he and I do just fine without one. Myself, I never have had a woman's touch. My own Mum left when I was just a child. I know where women are if I need them. I take it from your nod, you feel the same. No new Mum for Harry?"
"I can't say I'd never get married. I might, but she would have to accept Harry as a boy first and not the savior of the wizarding world as many do. Keeping the boy away from that ...I guess adoration, is the word I'm looking for, is a daily job. I have to screen the magazines and newspapers before I let him read them. If there are any articles about him, I remove them first. I don't want my son to be under such expectations at the age of ten! I want him to grow into a well, happy and pleasant wizard who makes his own decisions on life. I refuse to allow some prophecy made eleven years ago, dictate his life."
"Calm down, Sirius. I'm Severus not Albus Dumbledore. I'm on your side remember? I've always believed that prophecy was ridiculous. Even if it's true, who's to say it refers to Harry. As you have said, he isn't the only boy born to a wizarding family during that time period."
"I apologize for getting so out of hand. I feel strongly on this subject, as you can see."
"Apology accepted. I've ranted to you on occasion so we are even. I do need to tell you some news that may not be what you want to hear. Are you aware, I gave Harry's Potions Class an exam yesterday?"
"Yes, he mentioned something about that. What do you need to tell me?" Sirius asks.
"I scored the exams just before coming tonight. Harry's was one of the last ones I scored. I'm sorry to tell you but he scored in the dreadful range. He completely skipped two questions, and mixed up the listings for creation of two potions. I am shocked, actually. In class he can brew these potions with no problems but writing out the steps or ingredients seems to throw him. I have the test with me if you'd like to see it."
"I see he skipped the questions where you asked for specific details on why you added one ingredient over another. I know you cover all of this in your class and from checking through Harry's assignments, I also know he's been given essays on these subjects. It looks to me as if my son isn't applying what he knows when it comes to written exams. How are his essays? I check to be sure he's completed his homework but I don't read them."
"I happen to have one with me. I'd like you to read it for yourself." Severus replies, pulling the paper out of his coat pocket.
The Uses of Cat Tails in Potions.
I want to say first that I am against the use of animal parts in potions. I don't like ti at all dna wish ti would pots. Animals are my friends and ti si wrong to use them like this. That is the end of my essay. You wanted lots of feet so here is more. WRONG WRONG WRONG ...
"Exactly how many times did he write the word "wrong" ? The cheeky little whelp! What is up with the small words being written backwards? Was he trying to be funny?"
"In answer to your questions, Sirius, all I can say is he's your child. Perhaps you know the answer to why he is writing backwards. In the first question, I believe I counted over one hundred "wrongs'. He does have a unique way of expressing his opinion. I would like you to know the assigned essay was on the uses of cattails in which I referred to The Plant, not the animal. Young Harry was apparently preoccupied at that moment and mistook my assignment for the animal not the plant."
"I will have a long discussion with him on that very subject. I can guarantee after I'm finished with my discussion, he will not turn in such an essay as this again. I will not stand for him to turn in such rubbish! The child is gifted and is capable of writing an essay equal to any fourth year student! He will rewrite this for you, Severus."
"I assumed as much. Now as to the exam, I'm prepared to retest those who scored low. I plan to score them on half credit to bring their score up. I'm also going to be assigning individual potions for each child. It's going to be another factor in the final grade. Harry does well in creating the potion, as I've said. He just seems to have problems putting it on paper."
"I will be addressing that problem with him also. I think that is just more of a anxiety problem. I don't believe he's deliberately shirking the questions. Do you?"
"I see him working hard on the exams. He does seem overly anxious at times. How is Draco doing in Astronomy? Is there something I should know?"
"Draco is the top student in the class. Don't tell Hermione or Harry this, but he has left them behind in terms of knowledge. Unlike Harry's in your class, his essays are remarkable. I've seen some third year essays which compared to what Draco turns in, look as if a first year attempted to write it."
"Draco enjoys learning and has a drive to be the best at what he attempts. I have to tell you this though, he is a tad jealous of Harry's wandless magic and high skills with spells. Writing and researching are easy for Draco. Spellwork is not. I caught him trying to teach himself some advanced spells the other day. He was working on getting the movements down for locomotor mortis and I had to take away his wand."
"What was his reason for wanting to learn the leg locking curse?"
"He told me he was going to use it on Jeremy Pippen to stop the boy from tormenting him. I informed my son if I ever heard of him casting a curse on another student, I'd see to it he spent the next day standing up, because he'd be too sore to sit!"
"Harry is under the same orders! Ever since he put Draco on the ceiling that day they were fighting outside your classroom, he's been told not to ever use magic without adult's supervision or my permission. He knows he had better not use a curse or magic to harm someone ever again! I didn't know raising magical children to be responsible, was this difficult. My Dad was the opposite of what I try to be. He encouraged my brother and myself to use magic at all times."
"My Father was a muggle so magic was prohibited around him. I didn't learn to use magic correctly until I came to school here."
"I am sorry to have to say this, but Sev, I believe we have only seen the beginning of what these two young boys of ours will get into! I think we have some rough years ahead. They aren't even First Years yet, so we have seven more years of supervising while they learn to use their magic!"
"Yes, I am aware of that and I agree! Let's have a drink to commiserate our future as Fathers!" Sev says smiling.
While the men were busy having a discussion on the joys and hardships of being a Dad, their sons were sneaking out of the castle.
"Alright Ron, Draco and I know not to make any noise at all no matter what we may see on the trip to the front doors. You are invisible so don't react if we run into someone, they are not going to see us. They could hear though and that would give us away. Promise?"
"I won't make noise. I promise. No matter what. Neville, lock the door after us and wait for the secret word to open it." Ron answers feeling the need to be a little bossy himself. It's irritating that the "brothers" don't trust him without cautions being given.
Walking down the two flights of stairs as a group of three is not as easy as Harry thought it would be. The boys finally arrived at the door only to be stopped by Peeves floating nearby. Making the sign for quiet, Draco stops all three. When Peeves continues to float by the door, Harry sends a spell to the hallway to create a distraction. Gleefully floating off to catch what he believes is a wayward child, Peeves leaves the door unguarded.
Out in the night air and running down the path to Hagrid's, Ron wheezes "That was quick thinking, Harry! I didn't know what we were going to do to get away from him."
Running into Hagrid's hut without knocking, causes Hagrid to scold "Boys! You'll scare our friends, with your boisterous behavior. Quiet and calm please. Now, let's talk about what we are going to do."
"We're sorry for running in that way, Hagrid. We were cold and afraid of being seen, too." Draco apologizes as Harry and Ron nod in agreement.
"Tis' cold,' tis true. I'm sorry too lads for scolding! I'm just feeling low tonight. I've got to say goodbye to my wee babies and it's sad. Now, the twins are to meet you at the tunnel entrance. Yes, lads, there's a tunnel under the mighty castle. The lads found it last year sometime and use it often. It leads to the exit door right near the flight of stairs to the Astronomy tower. Now, lads as you know, Professor Black's Quarters are also on that hall. Be extra cautious as I do not want you to be caught. The twins will be taking one cage and you three will take the other, to the top of the Astronomy tower. Someone will meet you and take the babies to a reserve in Romania. Now, listen carefully, as long as you don't jiggle the cage the wee dragon will be fine. If you happen to jiggle him he may be upset."
"Um Hagrid? What happens if he is upset?" Harry asks.
"He spits and may squeak. His spit will make you ill so do not let him get upset."
"Thank you boys for your help with gathering food and helping with these babies. The ministry frowns on having the dragons here. I couldn't let them die. It's worth the risk of angering the ministry to save them. The hippogriff is an orphan and needs to be raised in comfort. I'm afraid one of the dragons escaped earlier. He ran into the woods. While you are taking these, I'll go look for him and maybe follow you."
"We'll be cautious and take good care of both of them tonight. I have my invisibility cloak and that will hide us." Harry reassures Hagrid.
"Good planning, Harry. Okay lads, take the cages. Be extra careful of the hippogriff too. Hestia bites! Donovan spits and Hestia bites. They're only babies and don't mean to harm."
"Who is Donovan and Hestia?" Ron asks, looking around for other children.
"The babies o'course!" Hagrid replies sweeping his hand towards the cages on the floor.
"We'll be careful, Hagrid. We'd best get going so we won't miss the rendezvous with whoever it is coming to get them." Draco says looking at Harry.
"Here's the tunnel entrance, just where he said it would be. Draco, if you'll move the branches, I can hold the cage." Harry whispers.
Getting to the door of the castle, Draco whispers "Ron, you look out and see if you can find your brothers. We'll keep the cages."
"They are right outside the door and ready to carry a cage. If you like, they'll take the hippogriff since it's not the one everyone will be upset about."
"That's fine. Why don't you go with them and you can be the lookout for all of us. If someone is nearby, wave an arm." Draco tells him.
As the boys make their way up the stairs, Harry stumbles and jostles the cage. The dragon growls lashing it's tail back and forth just before it spits out."
"Merlin! I have dragon spit all over my coat and shirt, Harry!" Draco whispers.
"I know, so do I. I'm sorry, I nearly missed a step. I'll cast the cleaning charm when we get there." Harry whispers back.
Hiding behind a tapestry, Jeremy Pippen hears them whispering. Unable to see them, he recognizes the boy's voices.
"Got you now, Malfoy and Potter or whoever you call yourselves! The headmaster will be interested in someone having a dragon in the castle!" he thinks with a smirk.
Slipping quietly out from behind the hanging cloth, he follows the boys as they walk up to the Astronomy tower.
Coming out into the open air causes the dragon to hum and squeak.
"Shhh, be quiet, Donovan! You can't give us away, now. You are going to a new home." Draco whispers to the dragon soothingly. To his surprise, the baby seems to calm and quiet down as he whispers.
"Harry, I'm beginning to itch with this stuff on me. Could you get it off now, please?" Draco asks quietly.
"Evanesco!" Harry enunciates pointing at Draco's shirt.
Looking down, Draco gasps "My shirt! It's gone! You vanished my coat and shirt too, not just the spit!"
"Sorry, but I don't know any other spell to get rid of something. Maybe we won't be out in the cold long." Harry says as Draco begins to shiver.
"Drake? I hear something coming." Harry whispers.
"Is it Ron and the twins?"
"No, they're way over there on the other side of the tower. This is coming from the sky. OH MERLIN! LOOK!"
Looking where Harry is pointing, Draco's mouth opens in shock. A large, black, smoke breathing dragon is headed right for them.
"Harry! Open the cage and let's get out of here, NOW!" Draco says moving backwards towards the doorway.
"I'm with you! Let's go!" Harry says quickly opening the cage door and running after Draco.
Not noticing Jeremy Pippen hiding behind a large rock, the two boys rush for the door. Just as they reach it, there is a crash and sounds of rock falling. Looking back, Harry sees the dragon has landed on the tower and is bashing the rock wall separating it from the baby.
"It's tearing the tower down! Half the wall is gone!" Draco says in shock as the beast's tail lashes out to knock more rocks away.
"Look!" Harry says pointing at the opposite end of the tower.
The twins and Ron are busy handing over the cage to some men who are hovering on broomsticks. The others don't seem to notice what is happening on this side of the tower.
"How can they not notice?" Draco asks.
"I cast a silencing charm on that side but not ours. They can't hear anything until they come over here. We've got to stop the dragon or warn them somehow. If those men fly this way, they'll be hurt!" Harry says.
"How are we supposed to stop a dragon? It's at the baby now, anyway. Look Harry, it has the baby on it's back. There it goes! It's flying off with the baby. Hagrid will be disappointed, we lost the other baby." Draco tells him.
"I don't think he will. He wanted it to be safe and I guess that is a Mum dragon. She will take care of him. I'm not feeling so great. Let's get out of the cold and go take a hot shower. I'm exhausted." Harry replies.
"Well! You two are certainly in trouble now!" Jeremy says as he steps out from his hiding place. "Just wait until I go tell the Headmaster what went on tonight! Smuggling dragons, having one come and destroy the tower, out after curfew... I can think of more later."
"Go away, Jeremy! You didn't see a thing." Harry says waving his hand at the boy.
"What did you do to him?" Draco asks as they reach the dorm room.
"I gave him a different memory instead. He thinks he's been playing chess with his friends in the Slytherin dorm tonight."
"Hopping Toads" Draco says as he knocks on the dorm room door.
When Neville opens the door, the boys rush inside.
"Did you get it done? Everything okay?" Neville asks, looking at them strangely.
"Yes, we need a hot shower and then we'll tell you all!" Harry says walking off towards the loo.
"Draco, do you know that you and Harry are slowly turning green?" Neville asks.
"Turning green. You're chest is green and you're upper arms too. Harry is green in those places also. How did you get yourselves green?"
"I don't know, Nev. I just hope Harry knows how to change it back! Wake me when he gets out, I'm so tired right now. Draco says, stretching out on the bed.