He Has A Dog 4
"No water," Fleur ordered quietly pouring a bucket of sand on the embers surrounding the sleeping children and children they both were, for Harry, though he looked much healthier, was a red haired boy Gabrielle's age now. Following Fleur's directions, Bill and Sirius had smothered the remains of the fire using buckets of sand, revealing the two sleeping forms.
"The fire burned all the evil out of them," Snape said as he watched the three pour sand everywhere while he ate lunch.
"How do you figure?" Sirius asked.
"Harry looks a lot more like his mum," Snape replied.
"James was not evil!" Sirius snapped only to be shushed by Fleur.
"He was more evil than Lily," Snape said, "That's why Harry's a redhead now."
"I really have no response to that," Sirius said. "I can still see some of James in him."
"The non-evil bits," Snape agreed.
"I'm not sure if I'm ready for this," Minerva said.
"It's long past time Hogwarts had a new headmistress, you'll do fine," Dumbledore said before turning to Norville. "Would you prefer to check out an old creepy shack or a closed down orphanage?"
"Orphanage," Norville said, "I've seen creepy old everythings, but orphanages generally are the worst. Best to handle them first."
Dumbledore held out an arm to apparate them both and blinked in shock as a large brown and black Great Dane wrapped his mouth around his wrist just before they vanished. Dumbledore rubbed his temples and wondered how he was going to keep from going nuts when he got an idea, and promptly forgot about it and the dog again.
"Not a spec of soul within miles," Norville said holding the vial to his ear.
"On to the next spot then."
Once again the dog's presence came as a surprise, but then he remembered his idea and quickly tattooed four words on the back of his left hand with a spell, before apparating them to their next stop.
"They need a bath," Sirius said.
"And some clothing," Fleur agreed as she looked at the ash covered children.
"Do we wake them up or let them sleep for now?" Bill asked.
"Can we see Harry yet?" Hermione asked impatiently, from outside the room.
"Not until we get some pants on him," Fleur told her. "All their clothes burned up."
"Ok, let me know when they're ready," Hermione said with a sigh.
"We'll let them sleep it off," Fleur decided.
Snape pulled out another marshmallow and enlarged it to the size of a couch cushion before holding it over the sleeping children with a smirk on his face.
"I say we set it on fire and let the flames burn off the evil," Norville said as the two looked at the shed with the dead snake nailed to the door.
"Can we do that?" Dumbledore asked hopefully.
"I don't see why not," he replied. "Cursed items can't always be destroyed that way, but their protections usually can."
"Excellent," Dumbledore said throwing half a dozen fire spells at the place, overwhelming the decayed fire protection charms. The place burned quickly and Dumbledore was forced to cast notice-me-not and muggle repelling wards to keep from drawing attention. "What should we do while we wait?" Dumbledore asked as he watched the fire cheerfully burn away the gloom and doom that normally coated the area.
"Ever make smores?"
"Now they really need a bath," Fleur said as the two children ate handfuls of the melted marshmallow coating them.
"This is good," Harry said, surprising everyone.
"You can talk?!" Sirius exclaimed.
"Uh huh," Harry agreed before pretending to bite Gabrielle's neck as he sucked melted marshmallow of it making her giggle and say something in French that cause Fleur to turn bright red.
"Bath time," Fleur decided as Gabrielle hugged Harry gluing them both together. "Non," she told Gabrielle as she pried the two apart, and drug her off to wash.
"What happened?" Sirius asked Harry.
"Me and Gabby burned off stuff we didn't like or need," Harry said cheerfully.
"How?" Bill asked.
"Dunno," Harry replied with a shrug. "Think they're in the bath yet?"
"Probably," Sirius said.
Harry snapped his fingers and vanished in a burst of flame.
Sirius panicked for a second before he heard a loud splash and Fleur cursing in French. "Burned off all the evil, eh?" he asked raising an eyebrow.
"Just his evil, not his sense of humor," Snape replied.
Norville pried the stone loose from the ring and handed it to Dumbledore who stared at it in wonder. "Hold this."
Before Dumbledore could turn it over a large dog's mouth clamped lightly over his wrist.
"Are you sure you want to do that?" Norville asked.
"I-I want to know if what happened to my sister was my fault and beg her forgiveness," Dumbledore falteringly said.
"Isn't calling up her shade worse than killing her?" Norville replied. "Besides I doubt you'll have that long to wait before you can ask her yourself, but really all you have to do is ask yourself, 'was she the mean spirited unforgiving sort, who would hold your childhood stupidity against you?"
"No, I don't believe she was," Dumbledore said with a slowly growing smile.
"Then you already have your answer."
"Indeed I do," Dumbledore said as Scooby released his wrist and he pocketed the stone.
"Three left," Norville announced. "Two are... like the scar was, and one is like the ring."
"It's probably Helga's cup," Dumbledore guessed; as that was the last founder's item he had evidence of Voldemort possessing.
"Let's get the cup out of the way before we do the whole unmasking scene," Norville suggested.
"Unmasking scene?" Dumbledore asked.
"Final wrap up where all the secrets are revealed and the bad guys taken down," he replied wistfully. "I do a decent job, but Fred had a flair for it and Velma... I loved hearing her do it." He pushed the memories aside and stood up. "The cup is a long ways.. that a way," Norville said pointing towards Diagon Alley.
"Portus," Dumbledore said, tapping his robe with his wand. "Whenever you're ready," he said kindly.
Norville sighed and nodded. "I'm good, just missing my friends is all."
"I understand," Dumbledore said. "You should visit them after this."
"Would that I could," the lanky man said with a sigh, Scooby sensed his sadness and licked his face.
Dumbledore blinked and rubbed his temples. He was a master occlumens, but whatever charm the dog carried was powerful enough to ignore his shields. It was quite frustrating. Dumbledore noticed a tattoo on the back of his hand and wondered why he'd written it.
"Ready?" Norville asked.
"Yes," Dumbledore agreed, dispelling the tattoo.
Typing by: Stephenopolos