A/N: So writing that last unplanned bit caused a lot of other random ideas to pop up…this being one of them. Add in the fact that I am stuck at home thanks to COVID19 and voila! Another excerpt is born.
We've got a new protagonist for this chapter. I hope you enjoy the debut of Ted (Teddy) Lupin. Son of Remus and Dora Lupin, Godson of Harry Potter and Ginny ?, Hogwarts Head Boy, and the oldest of the next generation. This chapter solely deals with the kids so if you are only interested in characters from the original story you may want to skip this one.
This chapter is dedicated to Ginny…a character who I genuinely like in book canon but whose life I fear I will continually ruin in any story I write. I imagine the only thing worse than being in love with someone who doesn't love you back is having that person basically be considered family and intertwined with your life for the rest of your days. Add in the fact that they are also the most famous person in the wizarding world and yeah…shout out to Ginny for what I've put her through.
He was only two weeks into his tenure as Hogwarts Head Boy and Teddy Lupin was already regretting his decision to take the position. While he had spent the last month endlessly daydreaming about the private quarters and extra privileges the position would afford him he had greatly underestimated the extra responsibilities, interminable meetings, and seemingly unending silly dramas he was forced to mitigate.
Although he had been a prefect for two years he had been shocked when the Headmistress had appointed him to the position. She'd said it was because of how much the students from the other houses respected him but he knew the real reason. It was his payback for what a little shit he had been in his first few years at Hogwarts. The prolonged smirk on McGonagall's face during their weekly meetings as he detailed his dealings with the current little shits was infuriating. But now, two weeks in, he was finally going to reap some of the rewards for his suffering.
"I'm not sure we should be doing this," Victoire Weasley said uncertainly as they skulked quietly down the hall, "we're meant to be patrolling."
"It's all right, Vic" Teddy consoled, pulling her into the classroom he had already carefully selected and prepared based on its seclusion and multiple exit points. The proximity alert spells that Uncle Fred and Uncle George had taught him were in place outside and no other obstacles stood in his way. He had worked hard the last two weeks and deserved a few minutes alone with his girlfriend.
"We've finished half of our patrol…we can take a quick break," he softly reassured.
He bit back on cheering as Victoire smiled back. After spending so much time together in the summer their busy school schedules had put a damper on their activities recently. Based on her expression she needed a break just as badly.
"It still feels wrong," she said worriedly. "I'm a prefect and your Head Boy."
"I promise we'll check the map in ten minutes, okay?" he asked as soothingly as possible, pulling her closer. "I've missed you."
Apparently he'd said the magic words as he watched Victoire's worried expression soften into something much more affectionate. He loved affectionate Victoire. So much.
Victoire flourished her wand and a glowing 10:00 appeared in the air before beginning to count down. "Ten minutes, Ted," she said softly as she leaned closer and began to close her eyes. Yes.
And then it happened. The fucking family coin warmed in his pocket. He ignored it.
"Ted, did you feel that?" Victoire asked.
Shit. She'd felt it too.
"I'm sure it's nothing," he said quickly before leaning forward.
"We should check to make sure," Victoire stated, reluctantly pulling back. He knew she was right. Why did they have to be so responsible?
"Fine," Teddy grumbled, kissing her quickly before pulling the coin from his pocket. The message was from Sophia.
Cy is in McGonagall's office for fighting two first years from my house.
As annoyed as he wanted to be at Cy he couldn't muster it. He, Victoire, Artie and Sophia had all paid unscheduled visits to McGonagall's office in their first year at Hogwarts and he guessed Cy was there for a similar reason.
He pulled out the Marauders Map and confirmed Sophia was spot on. Teddy honestly had to give his cousin credit…he himself had barely made it through the welcoming feast before he had lost his temper and he was only Harry's godson. He wasn't quite sure how Sophia and Cy managed with the daily pressures they faced.
It's after curfew. How did you know he's in trouble? Were you with him?
A few seconds passed before his coin warmed once again.
The two boys that he hexed just got back with Professor Flitwick. He told them to leave me alone so I knew it had something to do with Dad. I made them tell me what happened.
Despite himself Teddy was impressed. Sophia's intelligence coupled with years of dealing with her two derelict brothers made her a shoo in for prefect in two years and he wouldn't be surprised if she eventually made head girl. The girl could suss out nonsense with the best of them already and she was only thirteen.
He heard curse words being muttered in French behind him and realized Victoire was reading the message over his shoulder. His coin warmed once again.
You need to talk to him. You know what it's like.
She was right. He'd had his family to explain it to him but even that wasn't ideal because they hadn't gone through it…and Teddy learned long ago that getting Harry Potter to actually talk about Harry Potter was a seemingly impossible task. It was down to him to help. He'd made a promise to his godmother after all.
He had been stunned when Ginny sat him and Victoire down and shared details about her first year at Hogwarts…the year she had seemingly been forgotten and left behind by her brothers. By the end of her story the message she was sending was clear: Even though Harry had saved her twice at the end of the year it would have been much better if someone had saved her at the beginning. Sophia and Artie were starting Hogwarts that year and it was their job to make sure they weren't forgotten or left behind.
His godmother's guilt trip and their own experiences dealing with the shadow his godfather cast had done wonders in making sure he and Victoire looked out for Sophia and Artie that year. Now it was time to help Cy.
"I should go," he said reluctantly as he stood and cancelled their timer. Before he could turn toward the door he was pulled into a passionate kiss.
"And that is why I love you, Ted," Victoire replied warmly, pulling him toward the door. "I'll finish our patrol and we will break curfew together tomorrow night for much longer than ten minutes. Tell Cy I'll wait up for him."
With a quick nod he was on his way. He quickly tapped a message back to his cousin.
I'm on it, Soph. Don't say anything to Artie. I don't need any more of you lot getting in trouble tonight.
As he approached the gargoyle his coin warmed once again. He smiled at the response…grateful for how level headed Sophia turned out to be. She would make an excellent prefect.
I'm not stupid enough to tell Artie!
Before he could mutter the password the gargoyle moved aside of its own accord, revealing Hagrid and a first year Gryffindor student descending the steps.
"Hi Hagrid, I heard there was an incident tonight. Is Cy still with the Headmistress?"
Hagrid shook his head in bemusement. "I'm not sure how you already know somethin' happened and I don' want ta know."
He gestured toward the boy beside him and continued. "Declan and Cy got into a bit of a scrum with two other firs' years tonight. The Headmistress wanted to talk with Cy alone for a bit and I'm escortin' this one back ta Gryffindor."
Teddy fought the urge to laugh at the angry defiance on the boy's face. It was clear that he didn't regret his actions.
"Mind if I talk to him for a minute, Hagrid?" he asked.
Hagrid nodded and the boy's stubborn facade seemed to melt away…giving way to thinly disguised panic. Teddy quickly pulled the boy down the hall and began speaking in his most gentle, non angry voice.
"I'm not going to lecture you, I reckon you got enough of that up there," he said as calmly as possible. He saw a look of relief come over the boy's face and continued.
"I'm guessing the other blokes made some comments about Cy's parents. Is that right?"
Declan remained stubbornly quiet, apparently determined not to betray his friend's confidence. Teddy liked this kid.
"It's all right, you don't need to tell me the details," he consoled before continuing. "How did you get involved in this anyway?" he prompted. "What's this got to do with you?"
The boy continued his silence. It appeared he still wasn't convinced that Teddy wasn't trying to trick him so he and Cy would be punished further. He kneeled down so he was at eye level and made a show of removing his badge and stowing it in his pocket.
"Look, Cy is like a brother to me and his dad is my godfather. You can trust me."
He watched as the boy considered him for several seconds before speaking quietly so only he could hear. "I didn't want Cy to go alone. I'm a muggleborn and he's stood up for me a couple of times already. Didn't matter anyway…I just stood there while Cy wiped the floor with them."
"How many points did you lose?" he asked.
"Twenty points each," he replied miserably. Teddy remembered how horrified he was the first time he lost points for his house. This felt like an excellent time to abuse his position.
"Twenty points to Gryffindor for…cleanliness," he declared authoritatively as he ruffled the boy's hair.
Declan's eyes widened in surprise, pleased and confused at what had just occurred. Teddy whispered his explanation.
"Whenever we award or deduct points it gets registered in a book in the Headmistress' office and we have to give a reason. For some reason she doesn't consider 'standing up to stupid gits' an acceptable reason for awarding points."
"Just do me a favor and make sure your tie is straight and your shirt is tucked in for the next couple of days," Teddy ordered as they rejoined Hagrid.
"Thanks, Mr. Lupin," Declan replied in a much louder voice, drawing a laugh from Hagrid.
"You can call me Teddy. Just so you know…one of your prefects is most likely going to interrogate you when you get back to Gryffindor. She's Cy's cousin so you can trust her."
"The fit one?" Declan asked.
He heard Hagrid snort out a laugh once again before he replied. "Yes, the fit one. But she's madly in love with me so don't get any ideas, yeah?" he joked.
Declan nodded, clearly impressed and surprised that Teddy had scored such a pretty girlfriend. Teddy was used to it at this point.
He turned to Hagrid. "Did she call Harry and Daphne?"
"Nah," Hagrid replied. "McGonagall told Cy she wouldn' be callin' 'em this time."
Teddy nodded his thanks. He waited until the pair was out of sight before tapping a message to Victoire.
Hagrid is headed back to Gryffindor with Cy's partner in crime right now…a bloke named Declan. I'm going to try and convince McGonagall to let me walk Cy back once she's done with him.
He'd only made it halfway up the steps to the Headmistress' office before his coin warmed once again.
Headed back to Gryffindor now. You are so cute when you're being responsible
He could not wait for tomorrow night.
As he entered the office he saw Cy standing stiffly, head down. Teddy could picture the stubborn scowl he knew was on his face. Upon sighting him McGonagall raised an eyebrow in suspicion.
"I don't recall summoning you, Mr. Lupin. Is there something I can help you with?" she asked.
"I heard there had been an incident and wanted to volunteer my help," he stated with as much conviction as he could muster. Technically it wasn't a lie.
"How fortunate," the headmistress answered knowingly. "I've finished speaking with Mr. Potter. Would you mind escorting Mr. Potter back to Gryffindor?"
"Not at all," he answered, grateful for her discretion. "Can I ask what punishment C- Mr. Potter received?"
"Twenty point deduction and an evening's detention," she answered, drawing another scowl from Cy.
Detention. Perfect. Cy would be forced to listen to his corny speech if he played this right. "I'd be happy to supervise his detention," he volunteered, hopeful that McGonagall would understand.
"Mr. Potter, would you please wait at the bottom of the steps. I need to speak privately with Mr. Lupin."
As Cy disappeared from sight Teddy quickly began speaking. "I'm not trying to play favorites or give him an easy detention. "
"I'll make him stay the entire time and make sure he doesn't goof off."
"I just think I can help him through this…you know…because I know a bit of what he is going through because of his dad," he spit out quickly in an effort to avoid another interruption.
McGonagall was now smirking. "Is that it? May I speak now?"
"Uhh…yeah. I mean yes. Yes, ma'm," he corrected, cringing at how stupid he sounded.
"I was just going to say you could use the Transfiguration classroom tomorrow night. I'm assuming you would like to supervise Cy alone?"
"Yes," he answered a bit less moronically.
"Very well, I will make other arrangements for Mr. Montgomery," she replied. "Thank you, Teddy. Twenty points to Hufflepuff."
"You don't have to do that, Headmistress. I'm Head Boy," he answered.
"You and I both know you aren't here representing Hogwarts. Have a good evening," she replied as she took a seat and began paging through a rather large book.
As he descended the steps McGonagall called out "I will have to compliment Mr. Montgomery on his cleanliness the next time I see him."
Teddy began walking faster.
He waited until they were halfway back to Gryffindor before trying to get Cy to talk, hopeful that the additional time would allow him to calm down a bit.
"Do you want to-"
"I don't want to talk about it," Cy interrupted, his scowl still firmly in place. Apparently he had slightly miscalculated the amount of time it would take Cy to calm down.
The rest of the trip passed by in silence but that was fine…he was going to have Cy trapped in a room tomorrow night with nowhere to go. He could run but he couldn't hide. As the fat lady came into view he spoke.
"You have detention with me tomorrow night. 7:00 in the Transfiguration classroom," he informed.
"All right," Cy grumbled before supplying the password. Teddy stopped him before he could make it through the portrait hole.
"It's fine that you didn't want to talk about it with me but Vic waited up because she's worried about you. So don't be a prick. All right?"
"I said all right," Cy mumbled as the defiant wall he had built crumbled just a bit.
"Good. Remember. 7:00, tomorrow night. Transfiguration classroom. We'll talk then."
"Yes, Mum," Cy answered before stepping through the portrait hole. He was such a little shit.
"If you'd like I can see if your mum could handle the detention instead. Just say the word and I can have McGonagall let her know about tonight," he replied. He fought a grin as he watched Cy's defiance seemingly disappear. He loved his Aunt Daphne but she could be properly intimidating when she wanted to be.
There was one point in his life…just after he'd started to blossom into the little shit he'd become…when he decided to talk back and make a joke at one of his Aunt Daphne's instructions. The look his Aunt Daphne shot his way afterward confirmed that he had made a serious mistake in judgment. His mother was an auror and his father was a werewolf but he'd never seen anything quite as intimidating. Harry had assured him it was all an act but he'd never quite believed him. No-one was that good of an actor
Teddy glanced at his watch again as he anxiously awaited the arrival of Cyrus Potter. He didn't think Cy would be dumb enough to show up late but he wouldn't put it past him…that was the sort of thing he was dumb enough to do at eleven but Cy was much more mature than him. Between the speech he was about to give and Declan addressing him as Mr. Lupin the night before he felt like such a fossil. He could not wait to get this over with so he could sneak out for a snog with his girlfriend like a proper seventeen year old.
He bit back a chuckle as Cy sulked through the door and immediately slumped into a seat in the back of the room, the furthest possible distance away from him.
"Knock it off," he commanded.
"Knock what off?" Cy spit back. He was such a little shit.
Teddy immediately started moping about the room, doing his best impersonation of his misunderstood and put upon cousin, plopping down in a chair and heaving a dramatic sigh at the end.
"You look ridiculous and you're pissing me off. And if you don't knock it off and listen to what I have to say I'll be letting your dad know what's going on."
"You wouldn't," Cy replied, a bit of fear now present…"and you're not supposed to swear in front of me."
Teddy hated doing it but Cy had left him no choice.
"I'm sure your dad has heard about your detention with me by now and I've got Defence tomorrow first thing. Do you want me to tell him it's been taken care of or that he needs to be involved because you're being a tosser?"
His words did the trick as Cy rose in defeat and moved to a seat in the front of the classroom.
"Much better. Now, let's start out with a story. Did you know when I was in first year I got detention before I even made it back to Hufflepuff for the first time?" Teddy began.
Now he had Cy's attention.
"Word had spread quickly on the train that your dad was my godfather so I spent the entire ride being bombarded with questions about your mum and dad. It did my head in."
"Nobody bothered me on the train," Cy interjected in confusion.
"That's because Vic and I warded your compartment with repelling charms once you were in it with the other kids," he answered, "the ones your mum and dad use when you lot go out in public."
"Is that why you were outside my compartment when the train took off? I thought you were checking up on me…thanks."
"No worries…so anyway, I was already annoyed by the time we reached Hogwarts. Then the sorting started and there were five bloody first years named Harry and two named Daphne…and during the feast I had to sit through an entire new group of people asking about your dad while I tried to eat. I was really on edge.
On the way out after the feast a third year Gryffindor said Harry Potter must be mortified that his godson was such a duffer that he had to be sorted into Hufflepuff. My parents had told me to keep my head but after everything else it just set me off…I turned around and showed off how much your dad and mine had already taught me. It felt really good to embarrass that kid. Sound familiar?"
Cy's head was still looking down but Teddy could tell he'd been thinking…and listening.
"Tell me what happened Cy," he eventually commanded.
"Those two Ravenclaw gits wouldn't shut their mouths after our second Defence class with Dad," he began, "said that it was no wonder he needed Mum's help because he had no idea what he was talking about...that they didn't think he could hold off a pixie. I tried to ignore it but they wouldn't shut up. I told them I could show them what he had taught me already if they weren't afraid to meet me that night."
"Then what," Teddy prompted.
"Then I showed them," Cy answered, a bit of his anger now returning.
It was time for the corny speech. Teddy started writing on the black board.
THE BOY WHO LIVED
He pointed to the words he had written and spoke. "This is how everyone but us thinks of your dad."
Teddy returned to the board and wrote another line.
the boy who lived
"That is who we know and care about, Cy…the lower case version."'
He could practically hear Cy's eyes rolling.
"What do you know about Aunt Ginny's first year at school?" he ploughed forward.
"Dad saved her from that diary. In the Chamber of Secrets," Cy answered, clearly bored and unimpressed by whatever Teddy was trying to say.
"That's the capital letter version of what your dad did. Do you know what Aunt Ginny said she remembers from that year?"
"Um, Dad saving her from the diary in the Chamber of Secrets," Cy answered, sarcasm in full force. He was such a little shit.
"There was a week left in the term when your dad saved her," he trudged on. "All of the other students were avoiding her afterward because of what had happened. Your dad saw how she was being treated and asked her to play a game of Exploding Snap. He spent the next couple of hours with her in the common room. If anyone had a right to be cross at Aunt Ginny it was your dad. But he wasn't…he chose to help her.
That's the lower case version of your dad that she remembers," he continued. "She told me she used it as her Patronus memory for years afterward."
Cy had stopped looking bored and was actually thinking about what he had said which was a start.
"My point, Cy," he continued, "is you are getting upset about the upper case version of your Dad…the one he couldn't care less about…the one we don't really know. If you really care about your mum and dad you need to ignore the upper case nonsense and focus on the lower case bits…like when you stood up for your muggleborn friend."
"It's not that easy," Cy protested.
"I never said it was…but it's loads easier than what your dad and mum had to go through at school…what Aunt Ginny had to go through. Your dad didn't get special permission to train us so you could bully other students with what you learned. He did it because he's terrified that someone will attack you," he continued.
"It wasn't bullying," Cy protested, "I didn't start it."
"The rest of the school won't be saying that. To them it will look like Harry Potter's son was showing off and bullying other students," Teddy answered. "I know. I was you six years ago, Cy."
Cy looked well and truly defeated now…it looked like his message had finally resonated. "It's annoying," he mumbled.
"You're telling me," Teddy joked, "I've had to put up with it for six years. But your dad has managed it for the last couple of decades so I figure it's the least I could do. Besides, you aren't alone. You've got me…and Vic…and Artie and Sophia. Not to mention the full product line of Weasley's Wizard Wheezes. If there are people causing you real problems come see us for help…otherwise try to ignore it. Okay?"
Cyrus raised an eyebrow. "You really want me to go to Artie for help?"
"Fair point," Teddy laughed. "Just promise you'll start with me, Vic, or Soph the next time you get upset, yeah? And if we need something blown up we'll bring Artie in."
"All right," Cy answered as a grin formed. "Dec said you awarded him twenty points last night. I'm also very clean."
"Sorry. Can't do it. I awarded points to your friend Declan for being a good friend…you were being a dumb dumb. So no points for you."
"A dumb dumb?" Cy laughed.
"A really big one," Teddy confirmed as he looked at his watch. Being responsible was so tiring…it was time for some nonsense now that the job was done.
"Looks like you've got about thirty minutes left in your detention. I think I'll have you write lines," he informed before writing on the black board once again.
"Teddy Lupin is the greatest wizard of his generation?" Cy sputtered indignantly. "You can't be serious."
"As the greatest wizard of my generation I can assure you that I'm quite serious," he declared officiously as he cycled his hair through every color of the rainbow.
Cyrus folded his arms. "You are an idiot and I'm not writing that."
"It's your choice of course," Teddy continued as he hopped up and took a seat on McGonagall's desk. "Declan has detention with Filch tomorrow night…I'm sure they could make room for you as well." Being Head Boy was brilliant.
Teddy couldn't quite make out the words Cy began mumbling as he pulled out his supplies and set to work but he knew they weren't appropriate.
"Just think," he continued. If you work hard and apply yourself maybe you'll be Head Boy someday."
"Then I'll get to make first years write stupid things for a laugh?" Cy asked.
"Exactly, Cy. Exactly."
The walk back to Gryffindor was much more pleasant that night as the two discussed the current league standings and how Harry had set them up for a lifetime of misery by playing for Chudley. Now that he had retired it was doubtful they would ever see their favorite club ever end up on top of the league again. He'd be shocked if they managed to make it back to the middle of the table in the next decade.
"Why did you walk me back?" Cy asked suspiciously as they approached Gryffindor, "it isn't after curfew."
"Well you know, as Head Boy it's important that I inspect all the common rooms from time to time…make sure everything is in order and all that."
"You just want to inspect Victoire," Cy laughed as he walked through the portrait hole.
"You know I had totally forgotten that she was in Gryffindor," he lied horribly, his heart soaring as he spotted her sitting with her friends in a nearby corner. Once she saw him her eyes lit up. She had been waiting for him.
"How does it look?" he heard Cy ask in his periphery.
"How does what look?" he asked as his eyes trailed Victoire standing up and saying goodbye to her friends.
"The common room. Everything in order?"
"Oh yes," he replied enthusiastically as Victoire began walking toward him.
"I can't believe they made you Head Boy," Cy muttered as he shook his head and left to join his friends.
"Greatest wizard of his generation," he called out in a sing song voice to Cy's retreating form.
"What was that all about?" Victoire asked as they exited out the portrait hole.
"Just molding young minds," he replied, pulling out the map in order to find the optimal location for the evening's activities.
She giggled and grabbed the map, folding it up and stowing it away in her pocket. "I've already found and warded a classroom, Ted."
Stay calm, stay quiet, he told himself. Don't ruin it by saying something stupid.
A few minutes later he was literally inches away from his goal. His wonderful, beautiful, soft goal. He'd kept his mouth shut during the entire journey but his stubborn responsible side kicked in once again. He quickly pulled out his wand.
"How long do you reckon, Vic?" he asked.
"No timer tonight," Victoire said in a near whisper as she lowered his wand. "I've missed you."
He pulled out the Marauder's Map from her pocket and quickly attached it to the nearest wall with a sticking charm, making sure it would be in his eye line while he and Victoire spent some quality time together.
He grinned as he tapped the map with his wand and uttered its activation phrase. Teddy was most assuredly going to be up to no good.
Two wonderful and glorious hours later he watched Victoire disappear back through the portrait hole then leaned against a nearby wall, allowing himself a few additional moments of peace before beginning the trek back to the Head Boy's suite.
As the door to his quarters came into sight he pulled out his wand and tapped the map once again, thoroughly depressed at how succinctly the next words out of his mouth would signal that his fun was truly at an end. He needed to finish his essay for Potions and review the patrol schedule for next week before he went to bed. He'd told the Head Girl they could discuss it tomorrow at breakfast and she'd know if he hadn't looked at it ahead of time.
"Mischief Managed," he muttered in defeat. It was going to be a long night.
A/N: For those who aren't aware the Exploding Snap anecdote is based on a bit of Ginny's dialogue from the play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. While I was underwhelmed by the play in general I thought Ginny's recollection of Harry playing Exploding Snap with her was a great insight into why those closest to Harry admire him. The bit about her using it as her Patronus memory was my addition.