The cold winter days with Theo and Delphi were a lot of fun. Harrison and Theo had never really been so close before — he actually began to learn a lot more about his friend. His favorite class was Care of Magical Creatures, he was surprisingly good at the Bavarian version of Exploding Snap and he and Delphi had become close from their letters over the summer.

On Christmas morning it was nothing like his old Christmases. His dorm was empty. Ollyth was asleep and his presents were nowhere near the amount he got the past two years. There was ten times the amount. There were so many that it was in three separate piles. Some of the names on the packages Harrison didn't even realize.

"Ollyth… Ollyth wake up," Harrison said, shaking his snake awake. He hadn't even gotten out of bed from the amount of shock he got from looking at the amount of presents at the end of his bed.

"What has happened?" Ollyth asked groggily, once she had finally awoke. Her eyes scanned the room and they were immediately drawn to the stacks of presents at the end of Harrison's bed. "By Merlin's beard that's a lot of presents."

"I don't know half the people's names!" Harrison said. He grabbed a random gift off the top. "Like, who in the world is Helena Provis?"

"I suppose it's from your sudden rise in fame," Ollyth mused as she carefully slithered off of Harrison's bed. She made her way to the gifts and even when she lifted herself up, the stacks gifts were still taller.

"I didn't know that many people actually cared about my kidnapping."

"Voldemort and the Ministry did make it seem like such an important thing. It would be weird for the public not to care."

"Yeah… what am I going to do with all of these?"

"Well you've been trying to regain Granger's trust right?" Ollyth asked and Harrison began to smirk. She didn't need to say anymore. Whatever Delphi and Theo didn't take, he could just give to Gryffindors.

There were two heavy knocks on his door, but it opened before Harrison could say, come in. Delphi walked in with her presents floating behind her. After she and her presents entered, Theo walked inside, but he was carrying his.

"Merry Christmas!" Delphi and Theo said at once.

"Merry Christmas."

"Jeez, you got a lot of presents." Delphi said, staring at Harrison's stacks of presents.

"You can keep anything I don't want. Half of these are from random people."

With the help of magic, Harrison unwrapped all of his gifts just little over an hour. All of his stuff was pointless and boring, but Theo and Delphi took some things they thought were interesting.

Even after opening all of his gifts, there was not one from Severus. And Harrison had made sure to keep his eye out for the man's name on one of the presents, yet there was nothing.

After Harrison made his trip to Granger and

Harrison had to slip away from Delphi and Theo to find Longbottom and Granger who were sitting in the library huddled over books.

"Merry Christmas," Harrison said as he walked over to the two. Madam Pince wasn't here — so he could talk as much as he wanted.

Longbottom stared at Harrison, bewildered by the gifts in his hands or the fact he was even greeting them.

"Oh, Merry Christmas Harrison," Hermione said smiling at him.

"M-merry Christmas?" Neville said, following Hermion's lead.

"I've gotten you gifts. They've only just come in through Owl so that's why they aren't wrapped. But I realized that I have no idea what you're interested in, so you can take whatever you like."

Longbottom looked frozen in place as if he expected Harrison to start attacking them out of nowhere. He slowly looked to Hermione and whispered, "Uh, w-why is Riddle being nice?" It was if Harrison was not right in front of him.

"Because he wants to be nice Neville," Hermione told him then she reached for something in Harrison's stack of presents. "I find it quite nice, thank you Harrison."

"It's nothing, really."

Hermione went for the books obviously and surprisingly she grabbed something other than a book. It was a small object, something too small for Harrison to see when he had picked up a stack of presents. Once she had turned it over in her hands, Harrison realized it was his Pocket Sneakoscope

"Uh, sorry Granger, that's mine actually. I must've grabbed that by accident."

"What is it anyways?"

"A Pocket Sneakoscope. The twins gave it to me."

When Harrison reached out for the Sneakoscope, it began to spin around and flash like crazy which made Harrison recoil. Hermione stared at it weirdly and once she brought it closer to her face it calmed down.

"Is it supposed to do that?" Neville asked, taking the Sneakoscope from Hermione to examine it himself.

"No. Fred and George said it was a bit buggy. It's only supposed to light up when someone untrustworthy is around."

"That's cool," Neville whispered in awe. "Someone like you would need something like that."

"Yeah. Too bad it's rubbish — oh well, you can keep it if you want. I'm not sure I want it anymore."

"Alright."

There was a pregnant pause before Harrison spoke again. "Do you want anything else? Want to take something for Ronald?"

"What do you think Ron would want?" Hermione asked.

"Definitely not a book." Neville responded.

"It would serve him right if he actually read for once — let's give this to him." Hermione picked out a ring, it was from the many mounds of jewelry that got sent. She glanced at Harrison as if she expected for him to say he misplaced that too.

"I-is that yours?" asked Neville.

"Nope — well kind of. It's a bit old so I thought I'd give it to you guys."

"I can already see Ron's face when we give him this. Imagine what he'll look like when we say it's from Harrison."

"I bet he'll be surprised."

Harrison dropped the rest of the presents on the floor and waved his wand above it, vanishing the rest back to his room.

"What did you do to the rest of the presents?"

"I sent them back to my room, I don't want to carry that around anymore. Besides magic is banned in the hallways."

"At least one of us knows," Hermione said, passing Neville a scolding look.

Harrison invited himself to the open space next to Neville, glancing briefly at the opened books across the table. "So… why didn't you go home?" he asked the two.

"Well… I thought Christmas here is better than with my family. Last year they made me stay up all night until I lighted all the candles on the wall magically." Neville recalled looking quite saddened. "I did it, but not before sunrise came around. I was tired for the rest of the day."

"And I decided to stay with Neville, Ron had no choice but to go home because his mother is scared about Black," Hermione then cut in. "Besides we needed to review stuff for Buckbeak's trial."

"Buckbeak's trial?" Harrison asked as if he was clueless. He had already known they were planning on helping Hagrid defend his oversized chicken.

"Yes. I would've guessed you knew since your best mate is the one trying to get him executed."

"Oh… I hope you do a good job of defending him. It'd be a shame."

"Can't you talk Malfoy into backing down?" Neville pleaded.

"I'll try," Harrison lied. "Draco has a very strong distaste for Buckbeak, so I'm not sure if it'll work."

"Hopefully he listens to his best friend."

"If he doesn't I could help with the defense," Harrison offered, though it was never his intention to help them. "My father is closely touched with the Ministry and I know some things that'll help."

"Brilliant — me and Hermione have been trying to see what other people have done to try and defend Magical Creatures in situations like Buckbeak's. So far we've found nothing useful."

"Well that's the wrong way about it. If you want to defend Buckbeak you can't use examples from other Creature cases. Have you found anything with a Hippogriff?"

"We have, but none of them ended in the Hippogriff's favor."

"Why not?"

"Because to the Committee's eyes Hippogriffs are big beasts that need to be put down," said Hermione.

"Then convince them that Buckbeak isn't like that. Perhaps get statements from your friends about the scene, maybe then the committee will see Buckbeak that way."

"That's not bad actually. We just have to wait for the break to end for everyone to come back. Then we'll be able to show it's all Malfoys fault."

Harrison refused the urge to laugh at their foolishness. He wasn't actually helping them, he was putting them at a greater disadvantage. Of course the opinions from their friends might work, but that was only if they believed it was Draco's fault.

Harrison would need to get into everyone's heads before they could go and ask. It would be easy to spread lies about Hippogriffs, especially if it was coming from Harrison. He could say he saw Hippogriffs killing people while he was in You-Know-Who's capture, or that if Hagrid hadn't kept them captive they would go on a rampage and kill everyone at Hogwarts.

A lot of people were dumb and thick enough to beleive it, especially if multiple people were saying it.

"I have to get back now before I'm away from my friends for too long." Harrison stood up, stretching his arms slightly. "I told Delphi and Theo I was going to say hi to Professor Snape."

"See you at lunch then. Merry Christmas." Hermione said, giving him a small wave.

"Merry Christmas!"

Harrison left the library and let out a sigh of relief. At least he was getting closer to Neville, maybe the next time he got to speak with him he could ask about the Prophecy.

Now he needed to go to see Severus as he told Delphi and Theo. The man wasn't at breakfast which was a bit weird, but he assumed he stayed in his office for breakfast.

When he arrived at the Professor's office he once again hesitated before walking in. He grabbed the door handle and opened the door, but Severus was talking to someone.

"I can assure you Lupin I've told no one — no matter how tempting it was," Severus said to who Harrison believed to be Professor Lupin. "But if it is proven that you are the source of-"

"Riddle?"

The Slytherin opened the door all the way and frowned at Severus and Lupin. "Merry Christmas, Professor. Sorry for interrupting."

"You're fine," Severus said, taking Harrison by the arm and pulling him into the office and away from Lupin. "Professor Lupin was just about to leave anyway."

"Yes. Snape is right. Merry Christmas, see you at the feast."

"See you."

Severus and Lupin exchanged one final glare with one another before the DADA Professor left the office.

"Merry Christmas," Severus said as soon as Lupin left.

"Merry Christmas — what were you and Professor Lupin talking about?"

"His classes."

"That sounded more than just classes."

"Well it could sound like anything if you don't have the context, correct?" Harrison nodded in defeat and decided not to pester him anymore.

"I assume you're here for the lack of your Christmas gift." Severus mused, as he made his way in front of his desk.

"I would've come either way, but yes, that's one of the reasons."

"I admit I have nothing to give you."

Harrison frowned and Severus just stared at him for a while before breaking out into a smile. "I'm joking — here." He picked up the wooden box on his desk and handed it to Harrison. There was nothing special about it — just a wooden box.

"What's this?" he asked before opening it.

"The box of things you've left at my house over the many years you have come over."

Harrison gave Severus a questioning look before flipping the latch on the box up and opening it. Inside there were many things — old toys, jewelry, horrible crayon drawings of Harrison and Severus and there were many pictures that all seemed to be taken by Harrison when he was a child. Most of them were of muggles outside Severus' house. Though there was one of Severus and Harrison standing in front of a lake near Spinner's End.

"You kept all of this in a box?" Harrison asked as he looked through everything. Each thing had given him a small amount of familiarity and safety.

"Yes. It was all because I wanted to give it back to you, you were quite forgetful of your things whenever you left."

"Thanks for returning it after five years."

"It's my pleasure."

Harrison looked down at the wooden box again, suddenly recalling his last gifts. Specifically the Invisibility Cloak and the past owner of it.

"I've always been wondering who the Invisibility Cloak belonged to before."

"I've told you already — James Potter." Severus spat the name venomously.

"Oh… I still can't believe you got bullied by a Blood Traitor like Potter and his group, the…" Harrison paused as if he was pondering the name of James Potter's group. "The Marauders," Severus finished for him.

"Oh yeah," Harrison snorted. "What other Blood Traitors were a part of his group?"

Severus opened his mouth to respond, but he slowly closed it. His eyes squinted at Harrison as his face shifted into something very unpleasant. "I thought I told you to not worry about Black," he said.

"I'm not worrying about Black!" Harrison insisted, wanting to curse instead. "But since you said that, I can assume Black was a part of the group."

Severus' glare hardened as he stared at Harrison, not muttering a word for the longest of times. "Get out." he finally ordered.

"So I'm right?"

"Out."

"Who were the other Marauders?"

A chair had knocked into Harrison's knee pit, making his legs buckle and making him fall onto it. Before he could stand up again, it did a sudden jolt as it turned around, facing the door that had opened. It zoomed forward and once outside, it dumped Harrison onto the floor and reentered Severus' office.

"Hey-"

Harrison had tried to yell at Severus, but the door had slammed shut and he sighed. He had been too risky. He hadn't learned about the fourth Marauder, he had only reestablished Sirius Black was one of them. Maybe he could try again later.

As he walked away, he ran into someone who he did not expect to see roaming the Dungeons.

"Hello Luna."

"Oh, Merry Christmas Harrison," she greeted as if she had only noticed him once he spoke.

"What are you doing down here?"

"I am looking for Professor Lupin. Professor McGonagall said he went to go speak with Professor Snape."

"Professor Lupin left Snape's office a little while ago. I'm not sure where he went."

"Oh… well I'm getting quite tired running around the castle — I have your gift, though I was planning on giving it to you during lunch."

"I'll wait until lunch then. I like surprises."

"Oh, alright then."

Slowly Harrison felt a rising heat come to his face as he thought of what to say next. But when Luna opened her mouth again, a bucket of ice cooled Harrison down, and he felt the heat in his face disappear.

"Would you like to walk with me?" she asked.

"Of course."

They walked forward slightly before Luna mentioned, "It seems everyone has returned home. I would've expected you would've been one of the first to sign your name."

"I did at first but I changed my mind… I'm just… scared of leaving Hogwarts. I don't want to get caught by Voldemort — again."

Luna only hummed. "I'll eventually have to leave, I know that, but I'm still dreading that moment as it is."

"Are you not scared of Sirius Black?"

"No. Sirius Black… he is the least of my worries. I've survived greater threats than him."

"Like the Basilisk?"

"Yeah… like the Basilisk — how do you know what the Beast was?"

"I read about it in a book last year. It was quite obvious what it was afterwards, the effects matched up. Ginny also said there was a dead snake-thing in the Chambers — what did you think it was?"

"I don't know… just something. I've tried to block out everything about the Chamber of Secrets."

"I'm sorry for bringing it up. I understand how traumatic it can be, killing something of that size."

"It's fine…" They walked up the stairs in silence before Harrison asked, "why'd you and Ginny stay?"

"She didn't really want to go home. She hasn't told me but she's scared of You-Know-Who too. I believe it's because she escaped along with you, that she would be next — her mum was the opposite though. She wanted her to come home, but obviously Ginny got her way."

"I'm sure Ginny is going to be fine," Harrison told her.

Luna suddenly stopped walking and looked around. She smiled at Harrison then said, "I'm going back to the Ravenclaw Tower."

"Oh alright. See you then."

Luna gave him a small wave and she and Harrison went opposite ways.

Harrison found his friends outside in the courtyard attempting to build the biggest snowman to ever grace Hogwarts grounds. They heard the biggest one ever made was twenty-one feet high and they did not even use magic. By the time it was time for them to go to lunch, their Snowman hadn't even gotten over ten feet.

When they arrived at the Great Hall, the house tables were pushed to the sides and in the center was a large round table where Professor Dumbledore, McGonagall, Snape, Professor Lupin and Flitwick, all sat.

"Ah, Merry Christmas!" Dumbledore said as the three Slytherins approached the table. "Sit, sit. We moved the tables since there are so few of us this Christmas break."

Harrison fell into the seat right next to Severus then Delphi and Theo took the other two seats next to him.

"All of your cheeks are red, were you out in the snow?" Professor Dumbledore questioned.

"Yeah, we were building a snowman." Harrison briefly answered because he knew his friends did not want to talk to the Headmaster.

"Where's the food?"

"We are waiting for the others to come to begin lunch," McGonagall told her.

And on cue, the doors to the Great Hall opened and walked in Neville, Hermione, Ginny and Luna. They were taken aback by the change, but walked over to the table anyways.

"How nice for you to finally join us," Severus said, his eyes specifically on Neville who diverted his eyes elsewhere.

"Yes, sit so we can begin the feast."

Delphi's head shot up and she grabbed Luna's arm and pulled her into the seat next to her before any of the others could sit. Harrison assumed Luna was the one out of the four she would want to sit by.

Once they all sat, the food appeared on towering platters that rotated and floated around the table.

"How has everyone's Christmas been?" Flitwick asked.

There was a silent pause as they all waited for someone to respond. Lupin cleared his throat and spoke up. "Well I got an anonymous gift. It was quite nice."

"I got a ton of gifts from people I don't even know," Harrison then added. "It was really weird."

"I've received bunches of books again. Not a pair of socks, unfortunately," Dumbledore said. He passed a wink to Harrison who had remembered that he desired Woolen Socks over anything. Perhaps he hadn't been lying about that. "How about you Severus?" Dumbledore asked the man.

Severus was holding back the urge to roll his eyes, obviously, but answered anyways. "Nothing has happened. I've gotten gifts and gave gifts. That's all." he said quietly.

The doors of the Great Hall opened again. It was Professor Trelawney, gliding toward them as though on wheels. She had put on a green sequined dress in honor of the occasion, making her look more than ever like a glittering, oversized dragonfly.

"Sybill, this is a pleasant surprise!" said Dumbledore.

"I have been crystal gazing, Headmaster," said Professor Trelawney in her mistiest, most faraway voice, "and to my astonishment, I saw myself abandoning my solitary luncheon and coming to join you. Who am I to refuse the promptings of fate? I at once hastened from my tower, and I do beg you to forgive my lateness…"

"Certainly, certainly," said Dumbledore, his eyes twinkling. "Let me draw you up a chair —"

And he did indeed draw a chair in midair with his wand, which revolved for a few seconds before falling with a thud between Ginny and himself.

"I dare not, Headmaster! If I join the table, we shall be thirteen! Nothing could be more unlucky! Never forget that when thirteen dine together, the first to rise will be the first to die!"

"We'll risk it, Sybill," said Professor McGonagall impatiently. "Do sit down, the turkey's getting stone cold."

Professor Trelawney hesitated, then lowered herself into the empty chair, eyes shut and mouth clenched tight, as though expecting a thunderbolt to hit the table.

There was an awkward silence once more as everyone silently ate from their plates.

"M-my parents sent me a letter telling me how my dad needed to get surgery on his hand," Hermione said breaking the silence. Everyone looked at her very confused. "Doctors had to fix his hand… because a kid bit him at work."

"What muggle job do your parents have?" Luna asked curiously.

"They're dentists. They fix people's teeth."

"How exactly did they send you a letter, Granger?" Delphi asked, holding back the usual venom in her tone. "I don't suppose you taught them how to use an Owl."

"I did actually," Hermione corrected. "And they used mines. I sent them Wizard sweets and they sent back their letter and gifts for me."

"Did you spend all summer teaching them? I don't suppose your parent's sort understand us Wizards very well." Delphi asked again, sarcastic curiosity in her tone.

Harrison could already see their conversation heading South. A few more passive-aggressive remarks from Delphi and Hermione then the whole table would set afire.

"They caught on quite fine." Hermione said and Harrison thought she would leave it there, but she then added, "It was not as if I was teaching them Ancient Runes… but I suppose they'd be able to catch along a lot quicker than you." Delphi's head shot up from her plate, her face turning slightly red, whether from anger or embarrassment.

"You know what-"

"How exactly do muggles fix teeth?" Harrison quickly asked before Delphi could respond. He could almost feel the anger radiating off of her. "I'm quite interested since they can't use magic like we can." It seemed all the teachers let out a relieved sigh when Harrison cut in.

"They have special tools that do the same things magic can do, just slower."

"Thank you Granger for sharing that," Dumbledore grinned. He looked around the rest of the table. "Does anyone else want to share what they got for Christmas?"

"Uh, I got a lot more gifts… like Harrison. From r-random people." Neville said.

Harrison glanced at Delphi who was paying a lot of attention to her plate instead of the conversation. She hadn't bothered to touch her food yet.

"Well then, if that's all I'll suppose I'll leave you to eat."

And that's what they did for the next hour. Of course a few conversations sparked throughout the lunch, but were still all awkward no matter how many facts Flitwick spilled about Charms, nor how many jokes Dumbledore told. When it was all done, Dumbledore was the first to stand and excuse himself to his office.

Delphi was keen on leaving the feast and convinced the boys to leave with her. As they were leaving, Luna stopped Harrison and handed him something in a bag.

"It's your present. I put it in a bag so it'll be a surprise."

"Thanks Luna. I'll look at it when I get back to my room."

She nodded and turned back around to the table.

When Harrison, Delphi and Theo arrived back at the common room, they sat around and did not do much. Theo laid on the empty sofa and discreetly looked over Delphi's shoulder to read the book she was reading.

Harrison looked inside the bag Luna gave him and inside was a sculpture of a snake. Like the one on Slytherin's banner. It looked almost real, from the scales to the jagged lines across the snout.

"You've been grinning at that for ten minutes straight." Theo teased, grabbing the sculpture from Harrison. "Because it's cool to look at," Harrison shot back at him.

"Where'd you get that from anyway?" Delphi cut in.

"It's Luna's present."

"Luna Loony Lovegood. Who would've known that she was good at art." Theo snorted, carefully handing the sculpture back to Harrison. Delphi just rolled her eyes at the mention of Luna.

"Do you want to play Exploding Snap?"

"Not now Theo," Delphi said. She looked back at Harrison and asked, "Are we still going to practice tonight?"

"I don't see a reason not to."

"You're going to go practice the Killing Curse again?" asked Theo, a grin threatening to break loose on his face.

"Yeah."

"How are you doing it without being caught?"

"We go into the Forbidden Forest away from the Dementors and the Aurors."

"Brilliant, when are you coming back?"

"Before sunrise for sure… are you gonna wait for us to come back?" asked Harrison.

"Sure, I want to hear about it."


Delphi and Harrison snuck back out once again and the same Auror from many nights ago had returned to the same post. She wasn't singing this time, but she walked back and forth, stumbling over her feet every minute or so.

Harrison and Delphi had to wait for the perfect time to rush past and when they did, they didn't dare sigh in relief.

They creeped down the hill, but to Harrison, tonight didn't feel like every other night. Something felt wrong. He almost felt like turning back, but he didn't. He would have a hard time telling Delphi why they should return because he himself didn't even know why they should return.

"Do you think I can try it out now? The Killing Curse?" Delphi asked as soon as they took off the Cloak.

"Um… yes, but let's prep first. So you don't hit the tree again." Harrison said, pointing his thumb at the tree with the burnt hole in it from the last time she tried it. "Or me," he quietly added, but Delphi still heard him.

"Yeah, that'd be so tragic," she cried sarcastically.

"Haha," Harrison replied just as sarcastic. "If I die, who is going to teach you the Killing Curse?"

"No one because since I've killed you, it means I've done it correctly."

"Ah… that's painfully true. But you don't have the guts to do it — Expelliarmus."

"Proteg-"

It was too late though because the Disarming Charm had hit her already and her wand flew right into Harrison's outstretched hands.

"I wasn't actually going to kill you," she informed him.

"I know that. But you can't use your wand just yet." he said as he placed her wand into his pocket. Delphi frowned at him, her eyes not leaving his pocket where her wand rested.

"Why not?"

"Because you're being downgraded." Harrison told her. He looked around on the forest floor, and barely sticking out of the snow was a stick. There was a quiet shuffling behind him in bushes and he looked behind him, examining it carefully. But nothing was there. Perhaps he was being too paranoid.

Harrison summoned the stick into his hand, afraid to leave himself vulnerable and bend down to grab it. He tossed it over to Delphi and once she caught it, she stared at him, genuinely confused.

"What the hell are you giving me a stick for?" she asked.

"So we can practice without you breaking your wand."

"In what way am I going to do magic with a stick?"

"You're not going to do magic — Locomotor stick!"

"Hey!" Delphi yelped as the stick rose in the air slightly slipped out of her grasp. Harrison made it float over to him.

Harrison jumped out of his skin from the sudden loudness of his cousin, and he glanced around nervously expecting a Dementor to appear from the trees. There was nothing of course and Harrison let out a sigh. "Don't be so loud," he quietly chided as he grabbed the stick out of the air. "That's what's going to happen to your wand if you can't brace yourself for the impact of the spell."

"Oh… I would've been able to do it if you gave me a warning."

"Alright then." He tossed it back to her and told her, "Okay, three, two-"

Harrison started early. Again, the stick flew out of her hand and floated back to him.

"You didn't warn me!"

"I did. Who said I was starting on one?"

"Give me my wand so I can hex that smile off your face."

"Alright, I'll stop playing," he told her with a nervous chuckle. Once again he tossed it back and she tried again. And again. And again. By the tenth minute they'd been practicing, Delphi eventually got used to the force of the stick escaping her hand.

Harrison gave her wand back to her so she could finally practice the Killing Curse. He wasn't very confident in his cousin, but he saw no reason to delay any longer.

"Are you thinking-"

"Yes. I'm already thinking about it," Delphi answered before he could finish his question. She tossed her wand between her hands before settling with her right. A new flower had begun to bloom in the snow, a Winter one. Delphi steadied her wand and pointed it at the flower. There was an anticipating silence for a couple of second before she said —

"Avada Kedavra!"

Harrison covered his ears as the first second of the bang ran throughout his ears then he shut his eyes so he wasn't blinded by the bright light. Harrison feared that when he opened his eyes he would see that Delphi failed again.

As he squinted to look at the scene in front of him he saw Delphi was still standing and her wand was still in her hand, thankfully.

"You did it!" he exclaimed once the realization had hit him. "It's not supposed to be that loud, but you did it nonetheless!"

"I did do it!" Delphi squealed, sharing Harrison's excitement.

CRACK

Both of them paused and looked towards where the sound came from. It was the tree. It no longer had one gaping hope in it — no, it had two.

That's when Harrison realized, he never checked where the spell hit. The flower was well alive on the ground.

The tree started to fall and quickly, Harrison rushed over and pointed over him and Delphi. "Protego!" The tree slammed on the shield, cracking it badly that it almost broke. "Move out of the way!" Harrison yelled at his cousin and she wasted no time to step from under the deathly tree.

"Locomotor tree!"

Harrison looked over just in time and to see Delphi point her wand up at the tree. The plain, white spell hit the trunk of the tree and it floated up, just a few inches in the air. Harrison released his damaged shield and dived into the snow and out of the way of the tree.

Delphi grunted as she released the spell, the tree falling to the ground with a large and heavy thud that vibrated the white ground.

"Are you okay?" Harrison asked her.

"Yeah. How about you?"

"I'm alright."

"Good."

Harrison got off of the snowy ground and stared at the tree that had almost killed both of them. It was close. Either him or Delphi could've been crushed if they hadn't been so quick to save each other.

"We should go, we were loud enough. I don't doubt at least one Dementor heard." Harrison told her as he picked up his Invisibility Cloak. Delphi nodded, but she didn't join him under the cloak before staring at the tree for a while.

"Now what?" she whispered to him as they began down their usual path of leaving the Forbidden Forest.

"What do you mean?"

"I've mastered it so you don't have to teach me anymore."

"Yeah. But you should still practice though, it'll be better if when you casted the spell it wasn't so loud."

"Okay then… are we back to searching for Black now?"

"Can I have the weekend off? It was already exhausting teaching you." Delphi gave him the side eye and he regretted his joke immediately. "I'm joking. I suppose we can start looking for him again. Our best bet will be to wait until he tries to murder me, maybe we'll get lucky and be able to follow his trail."

They both nodded in agreement as they walked up the hill, but they forced themselves to be quiet as they approached Auror. She was still walking back and forth (surprisingly) but now she was mumbling to herself.

"Work on Christmas they say, it won't be that cold they say — well bloody hell Kingsley, my knees are frozen and I have to walk back and forth to warm them up," she complained to absolutely no one at all. "But use the Heating Charm, Dora, it'll keep you warm — I've casted that damned spell about five times and I'm still cold. Merlin, I just want to go home."

Harrison and Delphi exchanged looks as they watched and eavesdropped on Dora's rant to herself. She seemed like quite the odd Auror.

"Moody wouldn't have made me do this… nah, he would've given me something worse."

"Let's try to get past her when she turns." Harrison whispered to Delphi as quietly as he could. She nodded and turned back to look at the Auror who hadn't stopped pacing.

"Just a few more months. Then I'll be fighting Death Eaters like Moody was." Dora turned around again and slowly stepped forward. That's when Delphi and Harrison went to sprint past her, but she suddenly whipped around.

"That'll be awkward won't it? A lot of them are related to- AH!"

Just as Harrison and Delphi were about to slip past, the Auror tripped on absolutely nothing except air, and tumbled over, knocking right into the invisible Harrison and Delphi. In the cousins' fight to stay standing, they ripped the Invisibility Cloak off of themselves, and exposed themselves to the Auror.

The Auror groaned as she lifted her head from off the ground, but immediately she saw the two toppled over each other and quickly got onto her feet and aimed her wand at Delphi in particular. The Auror's eyes were stone cold until she illuminated her wand and saw Delphi's glaring face.

Harrison wasn't sure if he hallucinated it, but her hair grew very long in less than a second and turned mousy brown. She looked awfully similar to Delphi, as if they were long lost sisters or something like that. He glanced between the two and saw that their noses were the same, sharp and pointed.

"Holy mother of Merlin, i-it's you…" At first Harrison thought that she was speaking to him, but realized her attention was on Delphi. As if Harrison didn't exist. Delphi didn't say a word though, she looked just as confused as Harrison.

"I thought you were Bellatrix at first, but you're Delphini." The Auror said, astonished. When she had turned to Harrison, he saw her face was red in embarrassment. "What are you two doing roaming around so late at night? Especially you." She asked, nudging her wand at Harrison.

"We were… playing."

"You do know Black is trying to kill you right?"

"It's been quite hard not to notice." Harrison replied sarcastically. He was sure he didn't hallucinate it this time, but the Auror's hair shriveled back up until it was around a inch in length. Harrison blinked a couple of times as he tried to wrap his head around the Auror's odd hair.

"Your hair, uh- is it alright?" he asked.

"It's hard to explain — c'mon get up." She helped Harrison and Delphi off the floor, but Delphi didn't accept her hand and got up herself.

"I got to take you to the Headmaster," she said as he struggled to put her wand in her pocket.

"How do you know my name?" Delphi asked suddenly and both Harrison and the Auror looked at her.

Harrison took the Auror's distraction to look around on the floor for his cloak. He couldn't see it though and as quietly as he could, he muttered, "Accio Invisibility cloak," and he felt the cloak fall into his outstretched hand. He quickly stuffed it in his pocket and looked back at the two girls.

"Erm- I'm your cousin. Nymphadora Tonks."