A/N: I am finally finished this rotten epilog! Well I hope you don't think its rotten, it was just very difficult to do. I wrote three different ones and did not like them, so I finally combined them (hence the length) and this is the result. Enjoy!

Chapter 16 - Epilogue.

It was dark and quiet in the hospital wing when Draco finally awoke. At first he wondered where he was and then his memory began to awaken as well.

"Oh Merlin!" he exclaimed aloud. "I'm not dead!"

"Ditto!" a voice replied. It was a voice Draco knew only too well.

"Potter, is that you?" Draco gasped.

"So it would seem." Harry replied from across the room.

"Exactly which you are you, if you know what I mean?" Draco asked.

There was a moment of silence before the reply came, "I guess I'm the me who was very surprised to wake up in a coffin and be told I had defeated Voldemort and his deatheaters and saved the wizarding world, only to commit suicide. If you know what I mean?"

"No more superpowers then?" Draco asked.

"Not if you don't count the coming back from the dead thing!" Harry snorted. "So which Draco Malfoy are you? The annoying Slytherin or the one who was willing to sacrifice himself for the sake of a rival?"

"There's only one of me Potter." Draco replied dryly.

"I thought the same about myself but apparently I was wrong." Harry replied and both boys fell into a quiet contemplation of the others words. Finally Harry broke the silence, "Why did you do it?"

At first there was only silence. "Ah... Well it's complicated." Draco finally began. "I came to see my godfather."

"Your godfather?" Harry interrupted.

"Snape!" Draco replied, "I had to see him about Mother. She is not well. My father seems to have had her under a mind control curse for a long time and now he is no longer magical, thanks to you… or the other you I should say. Mother is not doing very well."

Draco paused for a few moments before starting again. "I had just arrived in the Great Hall when the Archangel of Death appeared. When he talked about the sacrifice and so many people offered themselves and were rejected, I just sort of knew that if I offered he would accept. I guess I thought the world doesn't need me but it needs you... or the other you..." Draco's word faltered, "Anyway I just did it and that's an end to it."

"I guess I owe you..." Harry replied but Draco cut him off.

"You don't owe me anything, Potter!" Draco replied angrily. "I did it for the other you, if you want to know. He's the one that wanted to be my friend, not you! He's the one that gave away the lead in the house cup for me. If you grow up into him, come and talk to me then. In the mean time, just shut it!"

Harry waited a while before talking again. "What was he really like, this other me?"

"You… He was different. Powerful, oh yes! The most powerful wizard ever but he sort of made you feel ok in a strange way. I mean he could destroy the universe and everything but when he spoke to you it was as if you mattered… I not doing a very good job of describing him, am I?"

"Sounds like you liked this other me?" Harry replied.

"Well, in a way… I suppose… " Draco muttered and then after a long pause, "Do you think you'll be like that in the future?"

"I don't know…" Harry replied slowly, "He just sounded scary when the others talked about him. I'm glad you told me he was nice in a way. I hope I can be like that at least; especially now I don't have some homicidal dark wizard trying to kill me. I doubt I'll have any superpowers through. The headmaster said most of that was a result of the constant war. That won't happen now…"

"Good! You... He was pretty scary too." Draco replied.

"I guess this is going to make the whole boy-who-lived thing even worse. I'll be the boy-who-lived-fought-a war-came-back-in-time-saved-the-world-then-died-then-lived-again or something to that effect." Harry said grimly.

"Something like that!" Draco snorted, "Oh and I have a message for you from the Archangel of Death. He said to tell you to stop bothering him by dying all the time. He said he's not going to shove you back into this world again and if you're not really old the next time you die, you will be in big trouble! Or words to that effect."

"Merlin!" Harry exclaimed. "I still can't believe that whole Archangel of Death thing was real."

"Believe it Potter, he is the realist thing you could every meet. I'd do what he said if I were you." Draco replied.

Silence rained again between the boys until they both fell into a restless sleep. When Harry awoke, it was a bright morning with sun streaming in through the hospital wings windows. The bed Draco had occupied the night before was empty.

"About time you woke up" Ron's voice announced.

Harry groped for his glasses and after he had them on, he saw Ron and Hermione sitting against the far wall.

"Ron! He's every reason to sleep." Hermione told her companion angrily.

"Yeah! Yeah! He's had enough lying around." Ron continued.

Hermione ignored him and asked Harry in an anxious tone "How are you feeling Harry?"

"I'm fine Hermione" Harry replied with a smile on his face. Being with his two best friends always cheered him up. "Ron's right! I have had enough lying around for a while. Do you think you could find me some robes to wear?"

"What's wrong with these" Ron said indicating the black robes Harry had been wearing the night before.

"RON! They're death robes for goodness sake." Hermione yelled. "Go and get Harry some clothes from your dormitory. NOW!"

"OK No need to yell. I ain't deaf you know." Ron complained as he headed out the door. "Be back in a few minutes Harry"

Madam Pomfrey swept into the hospital wing a little while later, just as Harry was finishing dressing. "And where do you think you are going?" she said in her most matronly voice.

"Well I just thought... " Harry said.

"Well you can think again. You are not going anywhere till I have examined you again." Madam Pomfrey stated.

"But I'm fine really..." Harry complained.

"Oh yes, you're just fine. I mean it's not as if you had anything serious. Just a little touch of death." Madam Promfrey's voice dripped sarcasm as she ranted on, all the while beginning to wave her wand for the examination.

Harry just had to stand there and let her get on with it. Soon every possible scan and test was completed and Madam Pomfrey reluctantly had to let Harry and his friends go but with some words of warning. "Mr. Potter, in all my years as school nurse I have never had a first year student spend so much time in this wing. And certainly no student who has died and recovered. Be warned young man, I will not stand for any such nonsense next year. Now off with you and your friends before I have a complete nervous breakdown."

Harry and his friends ran laughing out the door.

"Where are we going?" Hermione asked as she followed the two boys through the school.

"Do you think there is any breakfast left in the Great Hall? I'm staving!" Harry said.

"Yeah, I guess." Ron said.

The three friends were soon entering the familiar hall, which was now back to normal after the funeral.

"Ah and here they are now..." Professor Dumbledore said as the three walked up the hall. Beside Dumbledore stood Mr. and Mrs. Weasley beaming smiles at the three young people.

"We have just been having a little chat about you." Dumbledore said as his eyes twinkled merrily away at Harry.

"Harry, how would you like to come and stay at our house for a while?" Mrs. Weasley asked.

"Oh yeah! Harry, you can share my room!" Ron exclaimed happily.

"Won't the Dursleys be expecting me, Professor?" Harry said frowning.

"You let me worry about the Dursleys, Harry!" Dumbledore replied, eyes twinkling madly.

"Well, if I wouldn't be too much trouble, I would really like to." Harry said brightly.

"Well go and get your trunks and we'll be off." Mr. Weasley said, "We'll all have breakfast at home." Their hunger forgotten for the moment, the three friends ran up to the Gryffindor Tower for their trunks and were soon off to the Burrow thanks to a portakey Professor Dumbledore had made from of all things, the house cup."

Ron looked on the cup where the names of the winning houses were engraved and seeing both Gryffindor's and Slytherin's name sharing equal place below this years date, he said to his best friend, 'Harry, what were you thinking!"

"Just remember to bring it back with you in September!" Dumbledore said as they departed.


A Few Days Later:

"Ron, Ginny, you run along outside to play. Your father and I would like a little chat with Harry. Alone!" Molly Weasley announced one morning after breakfast. Everyone knew it was not a request. Arguments would not be tolerated so they left Harry to his fate.

"Have I done something wrong?" Harry asked.

"No dear. You have been the prefect guest. My children could all learn some manners from the example you have set. No, we want to talk to you about you no longer being a guest here."

"You want you to leave!!!" Harry replied shocked.

"No! No!" Mrs Weasley replied hurriedly. "I'm not explaining this very well. Arthur you do it."

"Yes dear" Mr Weasley replied and turning to Harry said, " No, Harry we don't want you to leave, we just want you to no longer consider yourself a guest here. We want you to consider this your home. One of the family so to speak."

"That's very kind of you Mr and Mrs Weasley" Harry replied, "I love it here with you all but I'll have to go back to the Dursley's soon."

"Actually you don't, if you don't wish to." Mr Weasley stated to Harry's surprise. "The headmaster has contacted your Aunt and she is quite willing to give you up, if any can be found to take you in. And we are more than willing to do that!"

"You are?" Harry said surprised, "I mean permanently?"

"Of course," Mr Weasley replied, "And we are not the only ones…"

"Arthur!" Mrs Weasley exclaimed to her husband.

"No Molly! Harry has the right to make an informed decision about this!" Mr Weasley told his red-faced wife. "Harry, many people want to look after you, after what you have done for the wizarding world. I believe the number of formal requests for custody at the ministry has exceeded two thousand."

"But Mr Weasley, that wasn't me. That was the other me… the one from the future." Harry replied shocked.

"We know Harry. That's why I think you should stay with us. But it is up to you. Anyway there's no reason to make the decision now. Tonight at dinner you can meet some of the others wanting custody and then decide."

"Tonight!" Harry exclaimed, "They're all coming tonight!"

"Not all two thousand," Mr Weasley clarified, "just the ones which Dumbledore thinks suitable for you to choose from. Even the Longbottoms are going to be here. Curious how they recovered the very night of the feast? I wonder… Well never mind, your godmother is anxious to see you."

I have a godmother?" Harry asked surprised.

"Well yes, Alice Longbottom! Didn't you know?

"No, no one ever told me I had a godmother." Harry replied.

"Well at least you know about your godfather." Mr Weasley replied.

"I have a godfather too?" Harry asked with a puzzled expression.

"Oh Merlin!" Mr Weasley replied.

"Arthur, language!" Mrs Weasley complained.

"I'm sorry dear but something is very wrong here." Mr Weasley replied and then turning to Harry asked, "Harry hasn't anyone told you about Sirius Black?"

"He was the man the other me freed from prison. Professor Dumbledore told me." Harry said thoughtfully.

Mr Weasley gave his wife a meaningful look and then said to Harry "I think we had better have a long talk Harry. A very long talk!"


"Harry, you have some visitors!" Mrs Weasley's strained sounding voice carried up the stairs of the burrow.

"Visitors! Who would be visiting me?" Harry asked Ron as they hurried down the stairs.

The boys entered the kitchen to find Remus Lupin and Sirius Black sitting at the kitchen table. Sirius Black's face instantly lost its haunted look as it crinkled into a broad smile as he stared at Harry. Remus Lupin also smiled as he regarded young Harry.

"You know it's like seeing your father again although you definitely have your mother's eyes." Remus said.

"Ummm… People have said that before." Harry replied.

Sirius Black suddenly gave a bark of a laugh that startled everyone in the kitchen. "Sorry!" he croaked, "I just had to see you again, to be sure it was real." He then began to cry.

"Sirius, it's all right." Remus said patting his friend on the back. "What must you think of us, Harry? Coming here and acting like this but it does seem like a dream or a nightmare that we could not wake from until now. So please forgive Sirius's sudden emotional swings. He has a long recovery from Azkaban ahead of him."

"That's alright sir." Harry replied smiling kindly towards the two men.

"Please call us Remus and Sirius, Harry." Remus said smiling back at the boy. "After all we were your father best friends.

"Ummm Remus, could I ask you a question. " Harry said looking shyly hopeful.

"Of course you can. Ask me anything at all!" Remus replied.

"What were my parents like? I mean everyone tells me I look like my father except for my mother's eyes but other than that…" Harry shrugged as he finished.

Both men were shocked. "Well" Remus replied after a few moments. "I guess we had better start at the beginning. I first met you father and Sirius on the train to Hogwarts in my first year."

"We played a prank on him!" Sirius interjected smiling again.

"That was you two?" Remus replied.

Sirius laughed again with the now familiar barking sound and was soon joined by the giggles of Harry and Ron. The afternoon wore on as the two men told young Harry everything they remembered of his father and his mother, often to the amusement of everyone.


Dinner was a lively, if somewhat tense affair. There were so many people that the dinner was held on long tables in the field behind the house. But the food was up to Mrs. Weasley's usual excellent standard. Sirius Black did not eat much but each small spoonful of food he treated with great care and as he placed it in his mouth, a look of almost sensual joy appeared on his face. After 11 years in Azkaban prison being force-fed gruel, Molly Weasley's cooking was ambrosia. In his weakened condition, he just couldn't deal with too much of it, too soon.

The Longbottoms had arrived to be greeted with a cheer from most of those present. Neville looked hyper as he raced about introducing his parents. Harry greeted Alice Longbottom politely and she hugged him warmly. Frank Longbottom asked about Quidditch and wondered if Neville had a shot at the team next session. Neville looked about ready to faint at the thought of having to ride a broom ever again. Harry tried not to laugh. The Longbottoms were a very nice couple but Harry didn't know them and in the end the Longbottoms sadly realised this too. Harry would not be choosing them as his future guardians but they offered him their support in any endeavour he undertook.

The guests had just started desert when two new arrivals walked out of the house, obviously just having flued in. Professor Severus Snape walked up and deposited a number of potion bottles in front of Remus Lupin.

"Madam Promfrey asked me to deliver the restorative potions for Black. They are freshly brewed and are at their peak potency. I made several extra in case you wished to use some yourself Lupin. Being cured of being a werewolf seems to have had its impact on you as well. I will brew more next week should you require them. I suggest Black takes them without delay before they deteriorate." Snape said directly to Remus.

"You know I am right here!" Sirius said in an angry hoarse voice.

"I am all too aware of that fact, Black!" Snape sneered in return.

"Oh grow up both of you!" Remus snapped, surprising many. "Sirius, Severus was kind enough to brew these potions for you and deliver them personally, not to mention saving Harry's life this year. I think a thank you is in order." Remus said forcefully to his surprised friend. "And you Severus, I know what eats at you, what James and Sirius did. Haven't they more than paid for the arrogance of youth? Can't you make your peace with them and with yourself now."

Not many people had every daunted Severus Snape and Sirius Black before and never at the same time but Remus Lupin had managed it that night. "Now I want both of you to shake hands." And they did, if somewhat briefly.

"Professor," Mrs. Weasley asked, "have you eaten? I'll get a plate of food for you. We just need to find you somewhere to sit."

"Madam, I have no wish to intrude…" Professor Snape said somewhat taken aback by the fussing of his host.

"Nonsense, and who is that with you?" Mrs. Weasley said peering into the shadows by the back door that the person accompanying Professor Snape, had concealed themselves in.

"Mr. Malfoy and I will eat later. We have yet to find lodging for the night but I am sure..." Professor Snape was trying to get away from Mrs. Weasley.

"Nonsense, no one leaves my house hungry, young man! SIT!" Mrs. Weasley commanded. "You too dear. Sit over there with the other children while I get you a plate of food." Molly said to a surprised Draco Malfoy.

"Mum just called Snape, young man." Fred sniggered to his twin.

Snape frowned but he was certainly hungry and the smell of the food was driving him crazy. He beckoned Draco towards the table and sat down on the edge of the table next to Remus as Molly Weasley placed a plate of food in front of him.

Draco edged uncertainly towards the other end of the table where the younger ones had been seated. He was staving and the food did smell good. Molly Weasley, a plate piled high with food in one hand, used her other hand to push Draco forward.

"Budge up everyone! We have one more to fit in." she said pleasantly to the other young guests.

Harry, Hermione, Neville, Ginny and the twins all moved up to make room at the table for Draco to sit. Ron however, glared and stayed perfectly still blocking everyone's progress. Molly Weasley was not one to be defied especially by one of her own. She gave Ron a glare back that caused the boy to pale and give in instantly. Ron shifted his chair to make room for Draco Malfoy to sit down. Which he did, between Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley and directly across the table from Harry Potter. He was surrounded! And he knew it!

"Better eat up before the food gets cold." Harry said without any hostility. Draco was soon concentrating on eating the excellent food in front of him. Conversations had restarted around the table. Draco was just not expecting having to take part.

"So Draco, why are you with Professor Snape?" Hermione Granger asked. Draco froze with a fork of food halfway to his mouth.

"You don't have to answer if it's personal or anything. I was just curious." Hermione said after she saw the startled look on Draco's face before he changed it to his usual expression of disinterest.

"He's my godfather. I'll be staying with him this summer while my mother is in…" Draco said falteringly.

"St Mungo's" Neville finished for the boy.

"Yes." Draco responded.

"I saw you there yesterday when I was waiting for my parents examination to be finished." Neville said quietly.

Draco's mother had been held under his father's imperio curse for a long time. In fact, Draco suspected for the entire time of their marriage, if not longer. Now Lucius Malfoy was without magic and was being held for questioning by the ministry, the curse was lifted but it was too late. All that remained of Draco's mother's mind was destroyed. Draco doubted his mother would ever be able to function as a normal independent person again.

Draco waited for the derision to begin. "Draco mother's in St Mungo's", "Draco mother's a nutter". But it did not come. In fact, what he got was not derision or even pity but understanding from the last person he ever expected.

"I'm sure she will be alright." Neville Longbottom said, "My parents were in the same ward for years and they looked after them very well. They're fine now. I sure your mother will be all right eventually too, Draco. Never give up hope. I never did and neither should you!"

There were murmurs of agreement around the table from all that had heard.

"So you'll be staying at Hogwarts?" Harry asked.

"No, the board of Governors doesn't permit any students to stay over the summer." Draco said just before everyone's attention was diverted by Professor Dumbledore tapping his glass for silence.

"I just have a quick few words to say. First let me thank our hosts for this wonderful meal." Dumbledore said, pausing for people expressing agreement to Mr. and Mrs. Weasley.

"A shadow has been lifted from our world at long last." Dumbledore continued, "but it was not without great cost. I ask you to raise your glasses in a toast to their memory. To Lily and James Potter and all the other victims of Voldemort. To Absent Friends!"

The guests stood and raising their glasses they spoke many different names of those who passed fighting against Voldemort.

After everyone had regained their seats, Professor Dumbledore continued, "That brings us to the real purpose of tonight's gathering, helping young Harry decide who will be his future guardians. I believe at last count there were over two and a half thousand applications for guardianship submitted at the Ministry. I believe even Doris Crockford put one in! Well Harry, do you have any ideas about who you would like to live with?"

The entire gathering turned their attention to young Harry who squirmed under their gazes.

"Well I am a bit puzzled why so many people want to be my guardians." Harry said sincerely but most people laughed as if it were a joke. "I would be honoured for any of you to be my guardians. I just don't know how to choose."

"Just pick Mum and Dad, Harry and then you can just continue to share my bedroom!" Ron said as if that would be all tat was needed.

Harry saw the look of hope on Mrs. Weasley's face and the look of fear on the faces of many of the others at the table.

"Harry " Remus said kindly, "Sirius and I want to fulfil our oaths to your parents and look after you but if you would be happier with the Weasleys… We will understand.." Remus said but was unable to continue. Sirius looked horrified at his friend. His hands shaking and eyes teary, he looked about ready to break down. Harry was by his side in an instant hugging the man's shoulders. Harry gave Mr. and Mrs. Weasley an imploring look and they nodded their heads in silent agreement.

"Sirius don't cry! There's no need." Harry said putting his hand on Sirius shoulder, "I don't know how to pick who would be the best Guardian but I know that Dad would want me to help you if I could, so I think its best if I come and look after you. So you will just have to put up with me."

"Sorry Mr. and Mrs. Weasley, sorry everyone but someone needs to look after Sirius until he gets his strength back. Although where we are going to live I have no idea."

Ron had a very glum expression on his face since he realised Harry was not going to become his permanent roommate. But then a strange look crossed his face and he said, "Maybe you could buy the old Maison place."

Harry gave a questioning look towards Ron but it was Mr Weasley who took up the explanation. "Of course, the Maison property! Ron you are brilliant!" Mr Weasley exclaimed and then seeing the puzzlement of the others continued, " The Maison property is just up the road from the burrow. It backs onto the land just over there by the apple orchard. There's a big old farmhouse with lots of rooms. Bit run down of course, but nothing a bit of work won't put right. It's for sale too. Signs went up just last week. The boys were worried that a family of muggles would buy it. That would put a stop to Quidditch in the orchard. Yes and with the right wards and the squad of Aurors being stationed on the road anyway, it would be a prefect place for you to live. There still may be elements wishing you harm for recent events. We'll take a look at it in the morning and see if the three of you like it!"

"We'll be neighbours!" Mrs Weasley said thrilled at least having Harry close if not a member of the household. But she puzzled over something her husband had said. "Arthur, why would there be a squad of Aurors stationed on the road."

Mr Weasley looked panicked and said "Ah! Yes, that! I have been meaning to talk to you about that. You see, a squad of Aurors is always assigned to guard the Minister's home and… " Mr Weasley looked uncertain how to continue. "Well, I should have told you before but with the funeral and everything… I'm the new Minister of Magic see…"

"ARTHUR WEASLEY!" Mrs Weasley voice screamed so loud that people shoved their fingers in their ears to protect what was left of their hearing, "Minister! MINISTER OF MAGIC! "

"Yes dear. And of coarse that means you are First Witch." Mr Weasley said as he saw his wife was building up stream for a full-scale rant.

"First Witch, FIRST WITCH!" Mrs Weasley shrilled. "Me! FIRST WITCH!"

"Yes and you'll be responsible for all the official welcomes, diplomatic balls and charity functions." Mr Weasley continued ignoring the look of panic on his wife's face. His son's and daughter and many of the guests marvelled to see Mr Weasley's deft handling of his wife's known temper. It was not for nothing that they had been married for so long and with so many offspring. Many people learned that night there were hidden depths to Arthur Weasley.


While Arthur Weasley dealt with defusing his wife, Snape finished his food and said to Remus. "Lupin, if you would be so kind to thank our hosts for me when they are less… distracted."

"You're leaving?" Remus asked in return.

"Yes, we must find lodgings… " Snape continued but was cut off.

"Why don't you stay here tonight?" a voice said.

Snape turned towards Harry Potter. "I'm sure the Weasley's won't mind and in the morning you can come with us to see the farmhouse."

"And why, Potter, would I want to do that?" Snape said incredulously.

"Well, you and Draco need somewhere to stay for the summer. If the house is as big as Mr Weasley said, there will be plenty of room for us all." Harry replied.

Snape's mouth dropped open as did Sirius's, Draco dropped his food-laden fork into his lap and there was a sudden silence all down the table as people stopped talking in order to listen.

Silence reigned until Remus began to quietly laugh. And that laugh grew until he roared with it. "Harry, you may look like your father but you are your mother's son alright. That's just the sort of unexpected behaviour she was famous for." Remus finally said over his laughter. "What do you say Severus?" Remus ignored the tugging on his elbow by Sirius.

"If you think for one moment..." Snape finally found his voice.

"An excellent suggestion" Professor Dumbledore weighed into the conversation, eyes at maximum twinkle.

"Now just a minute..." Snape replied.

"Nonsense my boy. You need a place for Draco and yourself to stay. Sirius and Remus need regular restorative potions to regain their vigour. Its a perfect solution for everyone." Dumbledore said happily.

Remus meantime was having an urgent whispered conversation with Sirius. "No Sirius I am quite serious."

"But Snape!" Sirius whispered.

"Let it go Sirius. Just let it go!" Remus said.

The arguments raged on for some time that night before both Severus Snape and Sirius Black reluctantly agreed.


The next day a very confused real estate agent made a surprise sale of an old farmhouse to the strangest people he had ever met, on the condition of immediate settlement in gold coins of all things.

The ex-prisoner, the ex-werewolf, the ex-deatheater, the ex-heir and the ex-corpse all stood before their new house.

Draco was the first to speak. "When are the servants coming to clean it up?" he asked. The other four looked at him in surprise.

"Servants!" Harry snorted, "You don't get it, do you Draco? The only ones who are going to get the work done are us! Where do you want to start, inside or out?"

"You can't be serious!" Draco replied appalled.

"He is quite serious Draco." Snape replied calmly. "I suggest we start on the inside first. The outside can wait till we are settled in."

"I get the front bedroom!" Harry declared.

"That's the one I wanted!" Draco complained.

"Race you for it!" Harry said as he bolted towards the house with Draco soon in pursuit.

"Children!" Snape exclaimed darkly.

"Quite so, Severus." Remus Lupin replied but he began to edge towards the house at the same time. Sirius quickly released what Remus was doing and ran for the house as fast as he could manage yelling, "Last man there's a rotten egg!"

"Really!" Severus exclaimed, "This is too much!" but as he said that a small smirk formed on his lips and he disparated. He reappeared at the top of the stairs inside the house just as Harry and Draco entered the front door.

"The front bedroom is mine I think!" Snape said smugly.

"Hey! That's cheating." Sirius protested as he came in panting at the effort of the short run.

"Nonsense. It is simple a matter of brain instead of brawn." Severus said as he walked into his new bedroom.

"I get the back bedroom then" Harry yelled as he bolted up the stairs.

"I wanted that one!" Draco shouted in pursuit.

Remus laughed and said, "Welcome to the madhouse!" and the name stuck.


The rest of the summer passed at the madhouse, as the farmhouse became known to one and all, in a blaze of cleaning, repairing, and painting. The five residents had lots of help from their red headed neighbours especially after Mr Weasley discovered the farmhouse was still connected to muggle services like the electricity and the telephone. Harry talked his guardians into buying a big television set and in the evenings the entire lounge room was filled to capacity as the people of the wizard world learned of this muggle gadget.

By the time Draco and Harry received their Hogwarts letters addressed to the Madhouse, the old farmhouse had taken on a very comfortable ambience and its surrounds where almost unrecognizable from the wild overgrown weed choked beds and hedges that had existed at the time of the sale. And as unlikely as it seemed, the residents of the Madhouse had all learned to get along relatively well. Well, in so much as no one had actually died yet, although it had come close several times. But in the end a sort of truce was developed. It was not perfect but it worked.

The only thing that worried several of the residents now was what would happen when Harry returned to Hogwarts. Draco and Severus would be there as well but that would leave Sirius and Remus alone again for most of the year. But the solution presented itself with the arrival of a very sun tanned Professor Dumbledore dressed in the most outrageous Hawaiian shirt, baggy shorts and sandals.

"Albus, what on earth." Snape said as he greeted him at the front door.

"Ah yes. Just got back from holiday, Minerva insisted. Seems to think I needed it after everything."

"Welcome to the Madhouse." Severus said sneering.

Albus Dumbledore eyes danced with delight. "I had heard of the name. Excellent choice I must say. Where is everyone!" the headmaster replied jovially.

"Ah Professor" Sirius said coming into the entrance hall. He was starting to look like his old self. The wild hair and beard were gone and his eyes held some life in them again. "Why has old misery guts left you standing in the doorway? Come in Come in!" Sirius said brushing past a growling Snape.

Remus chose that moment to make his presence known by loudly clearing his throat. Professor Snape's hand dropped from his wand as he saw Lupin's icy stare.

"I will remind you both of the terms of the current house rules. No insults and no duelling." Remus directed towards his housemates. "Albus good to see you looking so…" Remus started to tell the headmaster but was interrupted by the screams of two young boys.

"NO! DON'T" Draco's voice yelled.

"WHY NOT!" Harry's yelled back as they came running into the Hall.

"Must you yell!" Snape complained.

"Yep!" Harry said cheekily to everyone's amusement except Snape's. "Professor Dumbledore, you're here!" Harry said seeing the headmaster, "Great shirt Professor!"

"Why thank you Harry." Dumbledore replied pleased with the praise and then, seeing a blond head peering from behind Snape, he said "And Draco how are you?"

"AH.. Fine thanks." Draco replied.

"Actually, I wonder if I might borrow young Harry for a little chat." Dumbledore asked and seeing no dissention continued. "Perhaps we might go for a short walk Harry."

Harry and the Professor were soon walking up the small hill overlooking the house and adjoining apple orchard. They reached the top of the hill and Harry sat down on one of the logs lying on the ground.

"It is a nice view of the Weasley's house from up here on the hill but my time of sitting on hard logs and rocks has long past, so if you don't mind…" Dumbledore said as he transfigured a large log into a floral armchair.

"It was nice of you to come and visit Headmaster." Harry replied.

"It is my pleasure, Harry." Dumbledore said as he sat down in the armchair. "In fact I have been wondering how you are all getting along."

"Great, Professor." Harry said.

"No problems at all, Harry?" Dumbledore asked, eyes twinkling.

"Well it's noisy at times." Harry replied slowly. "But in a good way. It just takes getting use too, I guess."

"Yes, I expect a noisy household is something you aren't use to, having grown up with the Dursley's." Dumbledore said kindly. "Other than all the yelling."

"And it's just… Remus and Sirius are fussing over me like Aunt Petunia always does with Dudley." Harry said. "I'm not sure if I like that."

"They are just trying to show they care for you." Dumbledore said. "And after all those years in your Aunt and Uncles less than tender care, you do deserve a bit of spoiling. It seems I had greatly underestimated the contempt they have for the wizarding world. I am sorry that I ever placed you with them Harry."

"Its all right Professor. You fixed things so I don't have to go back now." Harry replied.

"Yes well as long as you don't become really spoiled like your cousin." The Professor said smiling again at the boy beside him.

"You don't need to worry about that, Professor. Uncle Sev thinks I need more discipline in my life." Harry replied rolling his eyes. "He keeps coming up with more rules for me but Uncle Remus and Uncle Sirius make him apply them to Draco too, so that's okay."

The Professor laughed loudly, "Uncle Sev?" he asked when he could stop laughing.

"Yeah well, the other two asked if I would call them Uncle and I thought, why not all three." Harry said and then smiling wickedly said, "It drives Uncle Sev crazy. I just have to call him Professor Snape when we get back to school. But you know, I might just slip every now and then!" and then Harry winked at the Professor.

Professor Dumbledore laughed again. "You are an extraordinary young man Harry Potter. A real credit to your parents!"

"Thank you, Headmaster. That means a lot to me!" Harry replied. "So how was your holiday Professor. Where did you get that shirt?"

"Alas except for the shirt, my holiday was somewhat disappointing. Hawaii has changed so much since my last visit and all those I knew there at one time have passed. But I suppose it has been over a hundred years, so some change is to be expected." Dumbledore replied musing on his long memory. "But now I'm back and there is lots to do. I have yet to find a replacement for the Defence against the Dark Arts position. I'm sorry my boy I didn't mean to stir up any unpleasant memories for you."

"That's alright Professor." Harry replied, "Have you thought about asking Remus? I think he'd be great as a Professor. And maybe Sirius could help too. I am worried what will happen to them if they stay here alone. If they become Professors, they will be at Hogwarts with us and we can keep an eye on them.".

"I hadn't thought about… but now Remus is no longer… and Sirius has been exonerated… Yes!" Dumbledore muttered to himself while considering what Harry had suggested. He stopped and gave Harry a twinkled look again. "I will ask them both straight away, Harry. It was a brilliant suggestion."

"Great Professor!" Harry replied grinning, "Of course you know, Uncle Sev is going to have kittens when he finds out!"

"Yes but I think it will be good for him to have all his family with him at Hogwarts too." Professor Dumbledore replied grinning.

"I guess we are like a family now. A very strange family but its better than…" Harry said thoughtfully.

"The Dursleys?" Dumbledore anticipated Harry's thoughts. After a few moments of silence he continued. "Now speaking of the Dursleys and specifically your Aunt. She has sent me a message asking if you could come back to Privet Drive."

Harry looked panicked. "I don't have to go back there to live now!"

"Just for a visit, Harry." Dumbledore replied.

"I believe your friend Ronald is trying to attract your attention!" Dumbledore said as his eyes, still madly twinkling spotted the young redhead walking up the hill towards them.

"HARRY!" Ron's voice bellowed. "I've been looking all over for you." Ron said as he reached the top of the hill. "We're getting quidditch sides together… Oh hello Professor Dumbledore Sir!"

"Hello Mister Weasley, well I mustn't stand in the way of quidditch. You run along Harry and enjoy yourself. I think I walk back to the house and see how your three Uncles are getting on."

"Ron I'll be down in a few minutes. Get Draco to get my Firebolt and I'll meet you at the field." Harry said.

Ron looked puzzled and said "Firebolt?"

"My broom Ron. It's in my room. Draco will know where. I'll meet you at the field." Harry replied quickly. "Professor, why would my Aunt want me to visit? It's not as if she has ever enjoyed my company before."

"I believe Harry that after almost a year without your company but with the uninterrupted company of her husband and her son, she may be looking upon you with more respect than previously. Anyway she has said she has a number of items of your mothers to give to you when you visit, so perhaps you should consider it."

"I don't know…" Harry replied in deep thought over this unexpected request.

Professor Dumbledore regarded Harry James Potter without the customary twinkles in his eyes. The headmaster's eyes were sharp and piercing.

"Is there a problem Professor?" Harry said innocently seeing the look on the old mans face.

Dumbledore paused and then said in a conversational tone "You know Harry, I have a great many interests many people are unaware of. One of those is broom design. After watching you this year in your Quidditch matches, I was inspired to design a new type of broom. One suited to the seeker's role. The good people at the Nimbus broom company are quite excited about the first prototype and insisted I name it. Thinking of you, I originally thought of naming it "the lightening bolt" but realized that would be a little too obvious a connection with you, so do you know what I changed it too, Harry?"

"I have a feeling I do, Professor." Harry replied.

"The Firebolt! So how would you happen to know a name of a broom that is not yet public knowledge, Harry?" The professor said intently, "Its you, isn't it. The you from the future. You are still here!"

"Yes Albus, it's me. I'm still here, Merlin knows why but I'm still here. He's here as well though, the twelve year old me too. We are sort of together in this body. It's very confusing. " Harry shrugged.

"That is most unexpected. We will have to consider carefully what we do now." Dumbledore said with a thoughtfully look on his face.

"I already have, Albus" Harry replied and then said one more word, "Oblivion!" as he waved his hand over the headmaster's head.

Albus Dumbledore's face changed to a blank expression for a moment and then one of confusion.

"Professor, I have to go now to meet the others for quidditch. Thank you for coming and telling me about my Aunt's message, Sir!"

"What? Oh yes! My pleasure Harry! My pleasure! You run along now." Dumbledore replied

"Don't forget to ask Remus and Sirius about teaching Defence, Professor!" Harry continued.

"No! No! I'll do that right away." Dumbledore stated as he rose from his chair and transfigured it back into a log and stumbled down the hill and away from Harry Potter.

Harry Potter stood for a moment watching the confused old man walk away. Harry had a self-satisfied expression on his face and a little half smile.

"And just exactly what do you think you are doing?" a voice said behind Harry making him jump. He spun around ready to throw two fireballs he had quickly conjured but stopped dead when he saw who it was behind him.

"Oh! It's you!" Harry said to the Archangel of Death.

"Yes, it's me." The Archangel replied as his void filled eye sockets bore into Harry.

"How long have you been listening." Harry said somewhat defensively.

"Must I remind you that time is of little relevance to me." The Archangel said. "And do get rid of those fireballs. They would have been utterly useless against me anyway."

Harry, with a wave of his hand, banished the fireballs. "So basically you are going to be watching me all the time?" Harry asked with the annoyance plain on his face.

"You can proceed on that basis!" the Archangel said with what appeared like amusement on his face. "Now stop stalling and answer my question. Just exactly what do you think you are doing to the old man?"

"Well he was about to interfere in my life once more and knowing him, he would have cocked it up again." Harry replied.

"And you prefer to cock it up yourself?" the archangel said.

"Something like that." Harry said now somewhat mollified in his anger. "I'll have to be more careful not to let anything slip like that again. It was stupid of me. I should have remembered that I didn't get the Firebolt for another 2 years."

"Your twelve year old self would not have made that mistake." The Archangel said.

"That's right I wouldn't" Harry said nodding.

"Quiet you! The grown-ups are talking." Harry replied to himself. The two personalities in the same body was making the conversation somewhat schizophrenic.

"Why didn't you let him deal with the old man? It is his rightful time after all and he deserves his chance. You can just withdraw to the back of his mind and observe for now." The Archangel responded.

"Yeah, you tell him!" young Harry said.

"He's just a kid! Dumbledore would have seen straight through him." Older Harry replied.

"And you did such a great job? At least, I know what model my broom is." young Harry cut in.

"Its not a problem, the headmaster won't remember a thing." Older Harry said.

"If your younger self had handled things, the headmaster would have only seen what he expected: A twelve year old boy with a twelve year's old dream of a loving family. But you instead shoved the boy aside. Bit of a control freak, aren't you!" the Archangel observed coldly.

"I am what I grew up to be and part of that is your fault. What the hell were you thinking when you shoved both of us in here?" Harry said getting angry again.

"Yeah! What were you thinking?" young Harry replied.

"Watch your tone. Both of you!" The Archangel snapped, his glare growing threatening.

Both Harry's gulped. Even the most powerful wizard the world had ever known couldn't match an angel and certainly not an Archangel and most decidedly not the bloody Archangel of Death himself. And as far as the twelve year old was concerned, he just knew this was no time to throw a Dudley like tantrum. Young Harry knew the Archangel wasn't about to give in like Aunt Petunia always did to Dudley's complaining. Both Harry's backed down with a mumbled "Sorry!"

"What I was thinking, was that you could help each other. The twelve year old can deal with growing up under much better circumstances than the older you had to injurer. The older you can be ready to deal with any little problems that might arise. The world is no longer threatened by Tom, but that does not mean all evil has been vanquished. More dark lords will arise and other evils will threaten the innocents of this world."

"So I get to play the bloody hero again, is that it?" Older Harry said sadly.

"I didn't say you had to raise another army and slaughter your way through the bad guys again. Perhaps you might try subtlety instead. Act behind the scenes and prevent trouble before it starts." Replied the Archangel. "After all, you know a great deal about the events of the next thirty years."

"And no one would have to know." Harry said thinking to himself.

"Now I really must be leaving." the Archangel said. "Oh I almost forgot your punishment!"

"PUNISHMENT!" both Harrys cried out in shock.

"Yes I believe that a punishment is in order for your misbehaviour. Oblivating the old man certainly deserves proper correction and as you are more powerful than anyone else it falls to me to administer proper correction in this matter." the Archangel said.

"I couldn't just promise not to do it again?" older Harry asked.

"NO!" the Archangel said bluntly. "Paddling your bottom would be too cliché."

"WHAT!" both Harrys responded to the idea.

The Archangel smiled menacingly at the boy in from of him and said, "Hmmm I think I have it. The prefect act of penance. Something ongoing to keep both of you in line in the future. You will agree to visit your Aunt for an entire afternoon."

"NO!" both Harrys screamed.

"Yes, and every time I have to provide punishment, the time of the visits will increase!" the Archangel said smugly.

"That's cruel, just too cruel." Both Harrys replied.

"Now off you go…: the Archangel said as he faded into the void.

"Well," young Harry stated, "you got us into this, so I'll sit back while you deal with Aunt Petunia and the others."

"I'm probably going to crack and blast the whole house to oblivion if that's the case." Older Harry replied to his younger self. "How about you help me out tomorrow and I'll show you some real good Quidditch moves. Moves no one has ever seen before."

"Mmmm, having Privet Drive blow up… " young Harry mused.

"I bet that would really tick off the Archangel" older Harry said regretfully.

"I guess we should avoid that. Okay I'll help out but only if these quidditch moves are really good." young Harry said.

"We'll start with something simple like the Wronski Feint ." older Harry replied, "You're going to love it!"


And they all lived happily ever after, after all!

Well, except for Lucius Malfoy

and the other deatheaters,

and Voldemort,

and Cornelius Fudge,

and the people who made black deatheater robes,

and the makers of the masks,

and the suppliers of dark arts goods,

and a whole bunch of other people who were just miserable to begin with, hated everything about the world and saw no hope at all, even in the good times that came after the fall of the most evil and powerful Dark Lord the world had ever seen.

They are known as teenagers!

{A/N: That's all folks!}