Fixing Past Mistakes

Chapter 18

The Beach And Grande Riviere Magical School

Severus had grabbed his wand and the pouch which was directly connected to his vault at Gringotts. The money he'd taken to buy the property in the UK had already been replaced. The potion he'd created to help people cope with their emotions was doing really well, and not just in the UK either; he'd had orders from St. Mungo's American branch. He slid both items into his pockets, which thankfully his shorts did indeed have. With that he guided a jumping, impatient three-year-old from the room. Merlin, he'd never heard Harry squealing before, not even going to the park. He was getting better, and it was music to his ears, it truly was.

"Can I press the button?" Harry shyly asked, peering at his daddy from the corner of his eyes as they entered the lift to take them back down to the lobby of the hotel. His green eyes would have put the sun to shame, such a sparkle they held within their depths.

"Of course; press that one," Severus instructed, pointing straight at the little button with "G" for ground floor on it. They were currently on the first floor. He watched Harry standing on his tiptoes to press it, watching it light up with obvious delight. Harry turned to beam at his daddy; he'd never been in so many different places before, or seen so many people. Everything was so different from the cupboard and the nasty people. He loved his daddy; he took him to the park, and now he was getting to go to the beach. His cuddles were the best though; nothing could compare to them.

With a ding the doors of the lift opened, letting them out. Instead of heading for the main doors, though, Severus headed for the gift shop inside the hotel. He headed straight for the section of beach goods, and grabbed a few things for Harry to play with: a bucket and spade, and of course a blow-up beach ball. After paying the shop assistant, he led Harry outside, the doors automatically opening for them... and that was when the heat really hit them. It was a heat that neither of them was used to, but Harry didn't seem to mind as he eyed the beach with awe.

Harry looked around at all the people, slightly fearful, but he wanted to see and play on the beach too much to care much right now. As long as his daddy was there, nobody would hurt him― he knew that. Harry tightened his grip on his daddy's hand as they walked towards the beach. They found a little secluded spot, where hardly anyone was around, and sat down, but they weren't alone for long, since more people seemed to come and fill the void.

Severus flicked his wand, removing the packaging from the bucket and spade, and handed it to Harry. No doubt he would be confused, but Harry would get there. He could see what the other children were doing with these; Harry was smart, he would pick it up. Removing the ball from the cardboard box, Severus tapped it with his wand, and it filled with air and closed the plastic air containment piece. He handed it to Harry, who grabbed onto it, still gazing around in awe.

Severus looked around them as well. He found nothing fascinating about the beach, or why people would want to come all the time. The noise was a little much for him, but occasionally there would be a lull in the sound, which let him hear nothing but the sea and the waves which soothed and calmed him like nothing else had. Most of the families in the area were older ones, more his age…or well, they used to be until he'd taken a de-aging potion. There were a few teenagers and a small child—that's if they were all mother, father, daughter and sons of course.

Turning back to Harry his lips twitched; the child had figured it out on his own; he was a smart boy. Severus already knew that; Harry had such a thirst for knowledge. He remembered things easily; he knew all the Magical and Muggle animals, and the figures had a proud place on his desk in his bedroom. He sometimes took the dragons and other magical figures to the bath with him, he definitely preferred playing with them. The Magical dragons liked to puff smoke, and Harry always gazed at them in awe as if trying to figure out just how they did it.

Harry cocked his head to the side, wondering why his sandcastle wasn't like the one over there; it just fell down again. His eyes widened when he noticed the mummy using her magic to make a big one for the little boy. He wanted one like that! His tongue poked out the side of his mouth; his daddy and the Elves did magic…his mummy and first daddy had had magic too. Could he do it? Turning back to his own lumpy sandcastle, he touched it, wishing with all his might that he had a nice big sandcastle too. Then before his eyes the sand began to move, until he had a nice castle of his own. Beaming at his own success, he continued to gaze at it, mesmerised.

"You're a clever boy, Harry! Well done!" Severus said, his voice filled with pride as he scooped his son up and hugged him close. He had finally done magic, and he had to make sure to praise him appropriately for it, so he knew it was okay. "I am so proud of you, little one."

Harry giggled, a smile still on his face as he hugged his daddy back; he was magical just like his daddy and he'd made his daddy happy. He always liked it when he made his daddy happy; he didn't like to see him sad. Lying there on the crook of his neck, he felt happy; he never wanted to end up back in that horrible cupboard. He was a good boy, and his daddy was here; he wouldn't let anything bad happen.

"I think someone deserves a sweet for being good, don't you?" Severus suggested, planting the three-year-old back on his feet. He was overwhelmed by the love and need shining in those green orbs. Dear Merlin, how could he have hated Lily's child? But no, he hadn't hated him…not really, he'd just hated the thought of who he assumed Harry would be: spoiled, thinking himself above the rules because of his fame. Fame would go to anyone's head, and he'd wrongly assumed Petunia would have spoiled him despite her sour childhood disposition. Removing a Galleon from his money pouch, he handed it over to Harry; the child's fingers clamped over it, as if he were holding onto a rock.

"Go on then, little one. Go get yourself an ice cream; I will remain right here, I promise, and I'll be watching," Severus said, showing him where the ice cream van was. "Two ice cream cones: one vanilla, and you can get any flavour you like." He had to help Harry become independent; he couldn't remain dependent on him forever. Plus it would make it easier when Harry began school. Severus was rather hopeful that the school would live up to his expectations. If it didn't... well, Harry wouldn't be attending it.

Harry looked over at the van before turning back to his daddy; biting his lip, he nodded slowly. He didn't want to disappoint his daddy, and he really wanted an ice cream. It wasn't too far, and his daddy said he'd watch; nobody was around, so he wouldn't be hurt. Clutching his coin as if it were a precious diamond, he walked towards the van, which towered over him when he got there a minute later.

"Hello, sweetie; what can I get you?" a nice lady asked, smiling down at him.

"Two ice cream cones please," Harry said, speaking slowly, remembering what his daddy had said.

"What flavour would you like, sweetie? We have mint, toffee, fudge, chocolate, vanilla, peanut butter, and strawberry." She would have named more, but the child looked overwhelmed with what she'd said so far.

"Toffee and vanilla, please," Harry said, his green eyes gleaming happily. Toffee sounded fun; he looked around just to make sure his daddy was still there. He beamed when he saw he was still looking over, see, and his daddy always told the truth. He turned back to find two large ice cream cones in the lady's hands.

"Ten Sickles, sweetie," she said.

Harry looked at her curiously, wondering what Sickles meant, then he remembered the coin in his hand. He'd seen his daddy hand coins over when buying things. Opening his hand he held the coin out for her to take, which she did.

"Do you have pockets, sweetie?" she asked.

Harry stared down before looking back up and nodding; why would she want to know if he had pockets? Then she handed coins back. He put them in his pocket, only to receive more from her, then another set, and another set. Until he had seventeen sickles in his pocket, which was nearly pulling his shorts down. His tongue poking out of his mouth, he used his hands to tie his shorts tighter so they didn't fall.

"Here you go, sweetie," the ice cream lady said, handing over both cones, but not letting go until she was sure the child had a good grip on them.

"Thank you," Harry said kindly, before turning away and toddling back to his daddy, handing over the cones as he took his seat once again on the sandy beach, where his castle was. Then he handed the silver coins over. With his small hands it took a while, but eventually they were all out of his pocket.

"Well done," Severus said, handing Harry his caramel-coloured cone. Flicking his wand to find out the time, he nodded briefly; they could remain here for a little while longer. Perhaps he'd take Harry into the water when they finished their cones. An ice cream cone... Severus sometimes felt as though he was in the twilight zone. He'd never had one growing up. He'd had a few sundaes at Fortescue's ice cream parlour when he could spare the money; other than that, he'd never allowed himself the pleasure of just enjoying something. "Eat it quickly; the sun will make it melt," he added as an afterthought, which was obvious; the ice cream was already beginning to run down the cone.

Severus hadn't had the pleasure of receiving positive reactions when he'd displayed magic as a child. His mother had been terrified, and his father furious; he couldn't help wondering now, as an adult…if his mother had even been the slightest bit proud. It was just after that, that she had begun giving him potion lessons—theoretical work, of course, since there was no way for them to do the actual brewing. Not only that, but she'd given him her books, which were always shrunk and hidden by the time Tobias got home. That was as parental as his mother had ever gotten with him; he had never understood why they'd had him to begin with, as neither of them had wanted children at all.

Harry licked his toffee cone, and nearly squealed again― it tasted the best ever! Licking his lips, he continued eating his cone, licking at the ice cream until it was nearly all gone. Looking up at his daddy he saw him eating the outer bit, so he did the same thing. It was nice and soft, easy to chew on, until he could get to the remains of the ice cream—which was runny now, but Harry didn't mind.

Severus ruefully shook his head before flicking his wand out and cleaning Harry up once the cone was finished, getting rid of the sticky mess on both his hands and face. "Would you like to go into the water?" He knew the answer before Harry even comprehended what he'd said, so he wasn't surprised when the little head snapped up and nodded vigorously.

"Come," Severus said, removing their shoes and socks and putting them neatly beside the beach ball and bucket. Harry picked the bucket up before taking his hand and they both went down to investigate the water.

"Look! Pretty," Harry declared, bending down to retrieve the item he thought was pretty.

"That, Harry, is a conch shell," Severus said, bending down, ready as always to educate Harry. Unfortunately, Harry wasn't going to be able to take it with him. Removing shells and other beach items was illegal in St. Lucia, and one needed a permit to even "fish" for the conch shells. In actuality, not many shells were found on the beach in these parts due to…"poaching," one could call it. People would take them, and try to sell them from small carts to tourists, which resulted in the tourists' getting ripped off. Then, when they returned home, the shells were taken away from them. "Animals live inside; the shell is their home."

"Where?" Harry asked curiously; how could an animal live inside it? He didn't shake it, just in case he upset whatever it was.

"They are very small," Severus softly said, before he took the shell and replaced it exactly where it had been before Harry took it.

Harry giggled when the water splashed all over his feet; it was cold but warm at the same time. The sand squished under his feet; it felt odd but Harry didn't let that deter him. He stepped forward until his feet were under the water, keeping a tight hold of his daddy, not wanting to fall. The waves were gentle, but enough to make him feel like he was about to topple over. This was nice; he wanted to stay here forever! Harry filled his bucket with water, but found it too hard to carry, so he had to pour lots of it out until it was light enough.

"Finished?" Severus asked, his lips twitching.

Harry nodded before he began walking out, keeping a tight grip of his bucket. Once they were back to their spot, Harry poured it all over an unused section of the sand, before he began to try to make a new sandcastle by himself. Unfortunately, all he succeeded in doing was making something that looked like a pyramid. Harry didn't mind, though; he liked it very much and was proud of himself. Harry looked up at his daddy when he dried his feet and began to put his socks on.

"We going now?" Harry asked.

"Are we leaving now," Severus corrected automatically. "Yes, but we will come back another day," he promised.

Harry gave Severus a big smile. He couldn't wait to come back; he'd had so much fun. He waited patiently until his shoes were on, before standing up and waiting for his daddy to put on his own. His hands scooped up the ball and his bucket, spade, and rake, not wanting them to be left behind. They were his, and nobody else was getting them; he clutched them possessively to himself, using only one hand so he could take his daddy's hand when they were walking.

"Come on then, little one," Severus said, making sure nothing was left behind before they walked back to the hotel. There was time for a bite to eat before they went to the school. He would just request room service; he wasn't in the mood for more company—although he had to admit it hadn't been as bad as he had envisioned. It was actually a peaceful place when you blocked out the noisy children. Still, he would rather it just be he and Harry for some lunch. With that in mind, it took no time at all to ask at the concierge desk for some room service to be delivered to them before getting into the lift. Harry once again lit the button, exuberantly, although Severus could tell he was beginning to tire out. It was no wonder; he usually had a little nap before now, but perhaps he should begin cutting it out altogether.

Harry and Severus - Grande Riviere Magical School

Severus used the Portkey at the designated time, and the Portkey took them directly to the front of the school. The large sign greeted them with the name of the school; under it was a picture of its insignia, and directly under that was the motto for the school, written in both Latin and English. Hogwarts' motto was, "Never tickle a sleeping dragon;" however, this school used the motto, "Non eos tantum, qui ausus est nimis valde, consequi posit"— "Only those who dare to fail greatly can ever achieve greatly." Shaking off his thoughts, he looked down at his son and realized he'd probably be carrying him; he looked too tired to walk anywhere. Thankfully, he had a lot of stamina, so he would be able to do it with no problem; it helped that Harry wasn't at his ideal weight yet—although he had gotten a lot taller since he'd taken him from Privet Drive; the marks on his door proved it. It also helped to prove that the potion was doing its job as well.

"Septimus Regis?" enquired a wizard stepping from the shadows. He was as tall as Severus himself, but that was where the similarities ended. This man was extremely tanned, with striking blue eyes, and had an air of confidence about him.

"Indeed," said Severus, nodding his head to the side, observing the wizard curiously.

"I'm Headmaster Adison; it's nice to meet you both. This must be Harrison?" the Headmaster asked, smiling in welcome to the young boy. He had the most exquisite green eyes he'd ever seen. He was also very shy, he observed, but a lot of children were, though that was mostly only children who weren't used to interacting with other people on a daily basis until they came to school. From the writing the wizard had done, he'd expected an older man; needless to say he was pleasantly surprised, and it just went to show there was hope for the younger generation after all.

"Good to meet you, sir. I thought this was an orientation tour," Severus said enquiringly. There was absolutely nobody else there, so it was obvious that wasn't the case at all, which had him curious. Why would the headmaster of an elite school come to greet them personally? It wasn't as if Dumbledore did the same thing to everyone that turned up at the school.

"None of the "sir;" my name is Talin; it's very nice to meet you. Why don't we take this meeting somewhere more comfortable? Would you like a tour of the school, or would you rather hear about it first?" Talin asked, gesturing for them to follow him. "The orientation meeting was changed; unfortunately neither I nor my deputy was available on the scheduled date, not something that's ever happened before, I can assure you. We set it for a week earlier; with you being so far away, we knew the letter would not get to you in time. I moved my schedule around, and thankfully succeeded in being here on time." He didn't do orientations on his own; there were just too many people coming. So there were always at least three teachers and five of the top students that had just graduated the previous term to answer any questions they had.

"You always do orientations?" Severus asked; it wasn't something Hogwarts did. If it was for Muggle-born students, then a teacher would go to them and talk about the school. The purebloods always accepted their places at Hogwarts; it was a tradition more than anything else—well, other than those who decided to go to Durmstrang Institute, which admittedly didn't happen often, mostly because the mothers didn't want their children going to school so far away. Durmstrang did not admit Muggle-borns into their school, so all those that attended were purebloods, which was highly desirable to the purebloods and more so for the Death Eaters.

"Of course; how else can the parents feel secure in sending their children here?" Talin replied, giving the wizard a curious look. He knew the wizard was English ―his accent gave him away; he knew a little about the UK, but not a lot.

"It is not done back home; Hogwarts does not offer orientations," Severus said. Looking around, his eyes gazed at the school. It had only two levels, unless he was very much mistaken, although it was much bigger lengthwise. In fact there could have been two of Hogwarts sitting on the school that way. That wasn't even counting the acreage on each side of the building, which seemed to be divided into Muggle and Magical areas. It would make getting to class much easier, that was for sure, without a legion of staircases to climb.

"How do the parents feel about that?" Talin asked, curious about their customs. Opening the door, he let the visiting wizard through first before taking a seat behind his desk. His office was nothing extravagant; he preferred using the money to educate the children rather than filling his office with items he would only ever see when he worked.

"I have absolutely no idea," Severus said honestly, as he took his seat, Harry sitting on his knee and looking around in interest at his new surroundings.

"Harrison? If you wish to play, there is a box of toys over there that may entertain you," Talin said pointing towards the obvious toys.

"It's okay, Harry. I'm not going anywhere," Severus said softly, giving Harry a choice.

Harry looked at both of them before he slid off his daddy's lap; they were just talking and there was nothing fun about that. So he might as well play... plus there was a large Abraxan in that box, and he liked the look of it. Climbing on the couch, he crossed his legs and grabbed a few toys from the box at the side, gleefully inspecting it thoroughly. His small figurines were nothing compared to this. The wings were really big; he would love to see one someday.

"You must have had him really young," Talin said, observing the child and wondering if the mother was still around. Considering he'd brought the child with him, he'd bet that Septimus was a single father.

"Indeed," Severus said, revealing nothing.

"And his mother?" Talin asked cautiously.

"She died when he was a baby," Severus answered truthfully, his posture tense; he did not want to get into all this. "What subjects do you offer for the students?" he then added to change the subject.

"What age?" asked Talin, becoming professional.

"Perhaps you should start with the age of four?" Severus asked firmly.

"They do not have classes per se; it's more of a nursery where they can come, make friends, and learn their words, numbers, and of course Latin. Four months into the year, they will receive training wands, and begin learning to open their magical core, using it once a week to expand it and get used to holding a wand. The spells will be simple ones, colour-changing mostly, and how to create bubbles out of the end of the wand, and perhaps even water. It's during this time that we find the more magically powerful children," Talin told him.

"Why?" Severus shrewdly asked.

"Well, as you may know, magically powerful children have it easier when it comes to spell-casting; they won't need as much guidance as those who find it difficult to cast spells. They are put into two groups, class A and class B. None are treated differently, and we use no terms like "advanced classes;" the children aren't made to feel special, or the less magically powerful ones made to feel inferior. All children should be given the chance to expand their potential. Children who have trouble young, do tend to surprise us later in life by overtaking others at exam time. We keep an eye on them, and if they do, their classes are switched, should both the student and his parents agree. The parents here have a large say in how their children are taught, and are always informed if something happens, whether it's something insignificant or concerning," Talin explained.

"Is it a boarding school? That's something that wasn't confirmed in the brochure I received," Severus asked.

"It's both a day school and a boarding school—which is only open to children aged five and up—but we never have more than ten students staying in the dormitory in any given year. Most people in these parts prefer their children home at nighttime," Talin said.

"And when they're five?" Severus asked. The school did sound very much more advanced than Hogwarts. Neither Dumbledore nor the Heads of Houses bothered to send notes home, not even when the students were gravely injured, whether it had been a potions accident (not that one had occurred since he'd become Potions Master) or just a bad fall from their brooms. Muggles were unaware of anything that happened to their children during the year; they were completely cut off, relying only on what their children wrote to them via owl whenever they felt like it.

Edited by Jake and Jordre thank you :)