A/N: Hey everyone! Welcome back to The Saviour's Pariah!

Thank you so much for all the support and I hope you enjoy this as much as I did in writing it.

For those of you interested in my other works, I have quite a few oneshots posted along with my other two main stories, The Power of Love (Harry/FemVoldemort) and The Guarder Snake (Harry/Female OC Slytherin)

A big thanks to my Beta's and Discord Staff - Alec, Alpple, Babo, CalamityXx, Champ, DorianGray, O'Neill, Seventh Son, SinisterFox, and Xevier!

Feel free to join my Discord for frequent story updates and other information, link on my profile.

Without any more rambling from me, I hope you enjoy the story!

(Sorry if you don't like it!)

September 4, 1998

Friday Evening

"Where are you off to, Potter?" Daphne asked him as soon as he stood up.

He looked at her for a moment, then switched his attention to Blaise and Tracey who'd also joined Daphne in looking at him and shrugged, "I'm off to deal with our little Romilda issue, seeing as they," Harry indicated with his head towards the almost empty Gryffindor table "are almost all back in Gryffindor Tower."

"I thought we decided the plan wasn't perfect and could benefit from a certain level of finesse." Daphne looked unhappy that he was going about it so bluntly, but when he looked to an indifferent Blaise and hopeful Tracey, he shrugged a second time.

"I'll not be as blunt as I was, I can promise you that — but you forget that I and the people I'll be speaking with are Gryffindors, a hands-on approach works best, believe me." Harry didn't want to feed into house stereotypes, not at all, but in certain instances they could be true. He believed the differing styles of approaching situations such as the one they found themselves in now was a perfect example.

Daphne narrowed her eyes at him, "So you truly plan to go about confronting the entire group all alone?"

"Daph, he's already said it'll work, have fai-" Tracey tried to help him only to be silenced halfway through by a sharp look from Daphne, the Greengrass girl switching her attention fully back to Harry once her friend was silenced.

Harry refused to be intimidated by Daphne and met her eyes, "I doubt I'll be alone — Neville will be by my side as well as a few other Gryffindor's from the DA if I feel that I need them."

"You know this how?" Daphne questioned, adding in a moment later, "You've not spoken with any of them - excluding - Longbottom since you've learned of the incident — even then you'd not included him in any plan of yours,"

"Getting yourself in trouble already mate?" Neville's amused voice sounded from behind him at the same time as he felt an arm on his shoulder.

Harry glanced back to see Neville without any of the usual company; that being Hannah, Luna or Susan.

Smiling victoriously, Harry turned his attention back to Daphne and gave a brief nod towards Neville, "Almost ironic — don't jinx me again," Harry was mid quip when he saw the subtle movement under the table from the Greengrass girl.

Tracey's eyes widened as she looked between Harry and Daphne, "Woah! How'd you see her going for her wand?"

"I've had plenty of practice — getting cursed at, that is to say, not having pretty witches going for their wands," Harry jumped behind Neville as soon as he'd finished saying that in case Daphne took offence to his attempt at levity.

"Are you blush- ouch!" Tracey rubbed her arm after Daphne had pinched it — Neville laughed at the antics while Blaise simply shook his head as if he'd seen it many a time.

"I suppose we'll see you this evening then, Potter?" Blaise asked while Daphne was looking anywhere but at Harry and Tracey was holding her hands up in surrender while trying to hold in her laughter.

Harry nodded his head a few times at the Slytherin boy, "Count on it!" he then split his attention by glancing between the three Slytherin's, "If you aren't against staying up a bit past the usual time, I imagine I can fill you in on what happens,"

Blaise nodded with a look of interest while Daphne continued to pointedly look away and Tracey smiled at him while winking with alternating eyes so quickly it looked as if she were blinking.

"Brilliant — I'll see you three this evening then," Harry said those words as his goodbye to his three peers and began the long walk to Gryffindor Tower with Neville beside him, the boy not needing to be told what they were doing before the task, knowing whatever it was would be just if it were something Harry was leading.

"Harry, you do know the password, don't you?" Neville asked him after a minute of the boys being paused outside the painting.

Harry scratched his head while glancing at the Fat Lady — of all the things he'd forgotten to factor in for his plan he couldn't believe it was the password to Gryffindor Tower that he'd forgotten.

"Well, Neville, truth be told there may have been an oversight to some de- Hey Fay!"

Fay Dunbar had just exited the painting and almost ran straight into the boys that were loitering outside of it.

"Hey Harry?" the girl asked questioningly, glancing between Harry and Neville.

"Could I bug you for the password — I want to visit a few housemates and only now realized that I've forgotten to get it prior to being here," Harry said after taking a step back to avoid completely blocking the girl's path.

Fay had a look of understanding pass on her face as she laughed, "You really forgot to get the password and only realized it after coming all the way here?"

Before Harry could answer, Neville did for him — the boy using Harry as an armrest as he leaned onto him, "Yup, Harry here forgot the most important part of visiting our home for years if you can believe that,"

Fay and Neville shared a laugh at Harry's expense, the Potter boy shaking his head with a smile on his face until his housemates finished their laughter with the sole girl among them saying, "The password is one that we've had a long time ago, it should bring back some nostalgia if you remember it — Pig Snout,"

"Wicked, thank you, Fay," Harry said to the girl who smiled and did a playful curtsy towards him.

"My pleasure Harry, see you both in the common room!" Fay then began the walk back to where the Eighth Years were staying, humming a song he wasn't familiar with as she did so.

Once she was gone and the boys were still standing outside the entrance, Neville snorted and mumbled just loud enough for Harry to hear.

"Pig Snout, who comes up with these things?"

Harry couldn't resist answering, "Anybody who's seen how Ron eats is my guess,"

Neville broke out into another bout of laughter as Harry said the password and dragged his friend in behind him — it came as no surprise that his entrance was greeted with applause and cheering even if it were the last thing he'd want. Such was life as the 'boy-who-won' and nothing he'd do for the foreseeable future would change that, at least not that he could think of.

Once the indistinguishable words and yelling were done, Harry dipped his head in acknowledgement while offering an incredibly lacklustre greeting.

"Hi everyone."

Those simple words ignited another round of cheers from the crowd of his housemates — they were so loud in fact that those who'd already gone to bed had come down from their dorms to see what the fuss was about and once they had seen who it was, most joined in with the cheering as they saw a boy who was granted legendary status in Gryffindor house.

Harry could only take so much worship and raised his hands as he'd seen Dumbledore do many a time; he was surprised when the action actually worked.

"Right, I just had a few words to say…" Harry looked around the crowd until he spotted who he was looking for — Romilda Vane, she was in the far corner of the common room and seated with a few girls that looked equally as awed at his presence as she was.

Good, Harry thought to himself, thankful he'd not have to focus her out by asking for her presence.

"It's brilliant to see you all back at Hogwarts and for any First Years, welcome to Gryffindor," a round of applause broke out from a few students but quieted down when those around them shot dirty looks in their direction, "I hope everybody knows that after the… the war," Harry swallowed after saying the word as he felt his throat constrict and his hands begin to shake ever so slightly, but he soldiered on when he saw a nod from Neville out of the corner of his eye, "That the most important thing we can do is to pull together, not apart. Hogwarts should be a place of safety and learning — not to mention fun, anyone who's ever been to a party after a Quidditch match knows that!"

A few students nodded with smiles at his words; not wanting to stand out and the gravity of Harry's speech keeping any louder reactions at bay.

Neville took over after his words, allowing Harry a moment to relax, "We're not here because of Professor McGonagall or any of the other staff, we're not going to demand anyone tell us about what happened tonight, we just want to say that we've all seen enough problems arise because of Voldemort," Neville ignored the gasps that passed at the dead Dark Lord's name, "The last thing we need is anyone antagonising Slytherin's, Ravenclaw's or Hufflepuff's, right?"

Slightly more than half of the students nodded with Neville's words, the remainder looked disgruntled or otherwise expressionless — Harry picked up immediately on the fact that Vane's group were almost the entirety of his peers that looked upset with those words.

"Brilliant, that's all really," Harry spoke up to essentially dismiss the gathered mass of students, adding in hastily after a few seconds passed, "Neville will be leading the DA this year, though I'll be making a few appearances from time to time, if you don't know what that is, ask an older student; everyone is welcome."

Harry hoped that would send a message to anybody who needed it other than Romilda Vane and her posse, he already knew that group would need a lecture from him no matter how contrite he was to be within a few feet of the girl that'd tried to force his love.

At his closing words, a majority of the students took his dismissal for what it was and went back to their prior activities; a few of the more overzealous ones approached him only to have Neville tell them that Harry would be visiting frequently and that there was no need to crowd him on his first night back in the Tower.

While not completely pleased with the large boy blocking their way, nobody would challenge the boy who'd stood up to Voldemort in front of the entirety of both sides and as such, they walked away while glancing at Harry; Ginny was one of those who took the most effort to leave Harry alone, the boy himself greeting her with a tired expression as if the energy had been sucked from him after being in Gryffindor Tower for only a handful of minutes.

She'd seen how he was after a few bits of small talk back and forth — that led the Weasley girl to decide that she'd speak with him another time after hugging him and wishing him goodnight.

Harry felt bad for essentially ignoring the girl, but after the drain of speaking publicly and the need to still single out Vane's group, he couldn't allow himself to feel too bad about it.

"You good, mate?" Neville asked after bumping shoulders with Harry.

"Yeah… yeah, thanks Neville," Harry grasped one of the taller boy's shoulders and squeezed lightly, "Still have one last thing that needs handling if you're good to carry on,"

Neville returned the gesture with one of his own as he clapped Harry's back, "I'll always be ready to help,"

"Thanks, Nev, let's get this over with," the second half of Harry's words were more for himself, but Neville nodded nonetheless as he followed Harry over to the corner with Romilda Vane and her friends.

It didn't take more than a second for Romilda to spot his movement in her direction and immediately the girl went to the edge of her seat with one of the creepiest smiles he'd ever seen, it was followed up with a voice speaking words as thick as honey but nowhere near as sweet.

"Hi Harry, I'm so glad you came to see me."

He took in a breath at hearing those words, the last thing he was wanting to do was lose his cool in the presence of the girl who'd had the gall to speak those words or the girls around her who giggled at them.

"Hello Romilda, I wanted to speak with you briefly about something that I'd overheard," Harry wouldn't be bringing up the Slytherin girls he'd spoken with, nor would he be acting anywhere's close to familiar with cocky and vain Romilda.

"Of course, Harry! Whatever you need I'll be more than happy to take care of" Romilda leaned forward and swiped her tongue across her bottom lip in an exaggerated manner — it was as if she thought he'd missed the way she'd said a couple of words. Romilda even added in another few words when he didn't immediately respond.

"Whenever you want,"

Struggling to contain the grimace that wanted to show itself, Harry smiled at the girl and thanked her for her… willingness, to help, but that wasn't what he was here for. Inhaling another breath and holding it in to calm himself, Harry told Romilda just why he'd come to Gryffindor Tower this evening.

"I overheard you speaking with a few Slytherin's, Romilda," he paused to take in the girls expressions, hoping to see guilt or shame but he was treated with the sight on neither, instead, the girl looked proud, almost as if she were expecting a 'thank you' rather than the scolding in which he was about to give her — that wouldn't do, "You told them to leave me alone, to avoid speaking with me, befriending me or romancing me."

Romilda nodded emphatically as she pulled at one of his hands with both of hers, "I did, aren't you happy? It means we can finally be together now that Granger's gone and you broke up with Ginny!"

Harry gently pulled his hand back from her grasp, the girl had been trying to push her face into it as if she were a pet rather than a person.

"I can't say that I am," Harry said while watching the girl's face fall slightly only to steel itself, "While I… appreciate… the concern you have for my person, I'd have to insist you don't warn a whole fourth of the population of Hogwarts away from me. As you'd just heard me tell all our housemates, now is a time to pull together, not apart,"

"Oh, Hogwash!" Romilda blurted as she stood from her seat to press her chest into Harry's, pushing their faces intimately close without any sense of romance, "You can't honestly expect us to believe that you mean that, can you? Look what all those Slytherin's did! Look at who they ki-"

Neville stepped in between the two of them, his hands looking every bit as tense as the whole of Harry felt.

"Enough, Romilda — Harry meant what he said and everyone you'd seen agree with them meant it too. If you even want a chance with Harry, you'll leave everyone alone — Hufflepuff, Gryffindor, Ravenclaw or Slytherin."

Romilda stepped back after Neville's butting in and opened her mouth to respond, only she closed it after being unable to find any words that would push back at the Longbottom boy. Confronting her wrong-thinking crush was one thing, but to bother both Heroes that were in Gryffindor House at the same time? That would be unthinkable.

"Would that truly give me a chance with you, Harry? If I left all those Slytherin's and other girls that don't deserve you alone?" Romilda batted her eyes at him prettily, or at least a perfect imitation of the gesture if it came from any other girl, even ones as tough looking as Bulstrode or hostile as Daphne.

A nudge from Neville told Harry to find the words and he quickly did so, answering with a sole word.


That seemed to get Romilda agreeable as the girl smiled and skidded off, though not before saying she'd promise to leave them alone from now on. Harry only hoped that she'd stick to those words for the remainder of his last year at Hogwarts — he didn't have even the slightest of hopes that someone as crazy as Vane would avoid causing another issue for a whole school year.

Neville watched her skip off with her giggling companions and once they were fully out of sight, even he sighed while rubbing at his temples.

"Don't know how you handled yourself just then mate, but good on you,"

Harry didn't care to spend even another few seconds in Gryffindor Tower and pulled at Neville's robes in the direction of the exit while he responded.

"It wasn't easy Nev, believe me," both boys exited Gryffindor Tower and now out, Harry turned to his friend, "I only hope that she'll hold to her words for this last year of Hogwarts,"

Neville slung his arm around Harry's shoulders as he replied while the pair made their way back to the Eighth Year dorms.

"So do I mate, you've earned at least one year without anything crazy."

Harry found himself nodding along with his friend.

He deserved as much, they all did.

"After you mate," Neville said with a bow and grin as he gestured towards the opened doors of the tower.

Rolling his eyes at his friend's playful antics and attempt at levity, Harry stepped in and found that the second set of doors was already opened for them with Blaise standing in it.

"Good evening Potter, Longbottom… I take it the talk went well based on your current demeanours?"

Harry nodded tiredly while waving one hand in an almost dismissive gesture, he realized a second later how that could be perceived as rude and amended his action with words.

"Yes, or rather it went as well as could be expected — suffice to say Vane won't be causing problems for the next few weeks at the least, hopefully longer, though I've no doubt she'll return to her antics when she realizes… nevermind," Harry stopped himself short of saying that he'd have no intentions of dating the girl; that was solely on the off chance that Blaise would use the information against them, as he wasn't one of the ones directly benefiting from Harry's course correction of the already semi-infamous Gryffindor girl.

Blaise merely shrugged, likely not unfamiliar with people keeping things to themselves being that he was in Slytherin.

Harry mentally chastised himself for that stereotype, but he let himself off light, as it seemed to be one of the ones that likely had some degree of truth to it.

"Anyone else waiting for old Harry here?" Neville asked Blaise, the Italian boy still standing in the doorway while observing the two Gryffindors.

"Yes, Davis and Greengrass waited up to see the results of your endeavour, Delphini had overheard Davis during their discussion on its success and invited herself along to hear from you what happened upon your return," Blaise seemed to be eyeing Harry upon finishing, looking for any sign of annoyance at the self-including girl that claimed relation to him.

None was given and Harry simply imitated Blaise's own earlier motion of shrugging, "Suppose we shouldn't leave the ladies waiting then," Blaise nodded and entered into the room, leaving Harry to turn to glance at Neville, "You going to be joining us for a bit or are you preoccupied with Luna?"

"I told you earlier I'd have your back, what makes you thi- oh, she's behind me I'm guessing?" Neville seemed to catch on to why Harry'd asked what he had when he saw the other boys eyes glancing over his shoulder — turning around himself as he trailed off with his question alerted him to the always joyful looking Luna with a dazed look and blushing cheeks as she looked to her boyfriend.

"I seem to have fallen prey to the Lusfelsers, Neville Longbottom," the girl said matter-of-factly while tapping her lips.

Whatever that meant, Harry assumed it was code for something as Neville went redder than his girlfriend and mumbled something to Harry as he hurried over to the petite blonde, taking her out of eyesight around a corner within seconds.

"Loo-Lovegood's a character, isn't she, Potter?" Daphne asked with one arm resting against the doorway and another on her hip.

Harry assumed he knew what she was going to call the girl, but he'd let it slide considering she'd corrected herself instead of saying it — it helped her case that Delphini and Tracey were each behind her peering over either of the girl's shoulders.

"I suppose you could say that, yes," Harry nodded his head and walked towards the trio of girls; that trio moved back from blocking the entrance as they'd been doing to take seats on the numerous couches that were near the fireplace with Harry not far behind.

Not even a second had passed after Harry seated himself when he was assaulted by Tracey's questions, the girl asking, "How'd the talk go? Did Vane let up? Are we fine to speak with you? Ouch Daphne!" she rubbed her arm that'd been pinched and right when she looked finished, she blurted out one last question much to the dismay of her blonde friend seated beside her, "Sorry for asking you so many questions! I hope I didn't bug you... Harry?"

Taking a second to collect himself while blinking at how the girl could say so many words in such a short amount of time, Harry smiled at the overly eager girl.

"Our talk went fine, Vane won't be bothering you for a while at least — who knows with her, yes you're all fine to speak with me and no, you didn't bug me, Tracey," Harry answered each question in the order it'd been asked and again, without him being able to say or do anything further, he was assaulted by the Hufflepuff-like Slytherin girl.

Only this time, it wasn't with words, rather, it was by actions.

Tracey had launched herself like a muggle torpedo he'd seen in films at him; so fast was she that he'd make the comparison to a Golden Snitch years later when he recollected the moment.

On the bright side, her hug was far from a bothersome thing. Tracey was soft and gentle despite her seemingly careless attitude, it'd not be a travesty if he were to receive more affection from the beautiful dark-haired girl.

Daphne rolled her eyes while prodding the girl with her wand and only once Tracey had yelped thrice did she remove her arms from around him to go back beside her friend. That'd been exactly what Daphne had wanted and after glaring towards her housemate for a few seconds, she turned her attention to Harry.

"You said 'for a while at least', am I to assume she'll be back to bothering us before too long or have you bought us more time than you made it sound?" Daphne asked that while doing an incredible impersonation of Professor McGonagall, he almost felt the intimidation from her strict features.

Harry shrugged while glancing between the three girls, "I truthfully have no clue how long it'll be before she's back to her antics — all I'll need you to do is tell me when it starts again and I'll find another way to take care of it. Until then, let's not think about it and enjoy our friendship, yeah?"

Tracey nodded emphatically, Delphini who'd thus far only been listening looked happy with the arrangement too… more so than she should be considering the lack of time they'd spent together. Harry berated himself for not speaking with Professor McGonagall either, he'd need to head to Black Manor or Grimmauld Place before too long so he could find out just who this mystery girl was.

When he got to Daphne, she looked pleased if only slightly so.

"I suppose we can continue to spend a modicum of time with you," she then raised her nose, her features looking as aristocratic as ever, "So long as you don't grow too attached to us."

Harry scoffed at that, causing an affronted look from Daphne and open laughter from Tracey.

Delphini chose then to speak up for the first time, "I wouldn't mind in the slightest if you'd grow attached to me, Harry — maybe we could go to Hogsmeade? I hear that's a wonderful place to go to if you're willing, it'd give us a chance to get to know one another better too," the girl twirled a strand of hair at the weird looks everyone, including Harry, was giving her, "Unless you'd rather do so in the castle? I didn't mean to make it sound like I was forcing you on a date…"

Tracey clapped excitedly while cheering, "Yes! I'm not the awkward one anymore!"

Daphne immediately pinched the girl's ear and made her apologize, though Harry could see that she didn't completely disagree if the sour look on her face was anything to go by.

"Well, now that we've heard from you, Tracey and I will be off to bed — we'll give it a week with you, should anything happen during that time, assume we'll go back to distancing ourselves from you," Daphne stood up and pulled her friend to her feet, she walked half of the way towards the girl's dorms before turning back to Harry, "If the opposite is true and you truly did cease Vane's stupid 'plan', I'll admit that your way of doing things isn't totally flawed. Goodnight, Harry,"

"Goodnight Harry! See you tomorrow!" Tracey ruined the dramatic moment Daphne had gone for by first saying the prior words energetically and second, running into the honey-blonde girl which had the result of knocking them both to the floor in a heap.

Harry pretended not to notice by looking away, though not before spotting Delphini trying to hide laughter of her own.

His attempts to stay straight-faced were only tried harder when he heard Tracey apologizing while Daphne grumbled to herself angrily, even stomping her feet once she was back on them. Thankfully they were gone a few seconds after that and he was free to let loose the laughter he'd been building up, as was Delphini.

He didn't know what he'd done recently to deserve spending a day with two beautiful Slytherin's to now spending an evening with another beautiful one whose laughter was almost angelic… but he'd take such wonderful days anytime.

"So… how was your day Delphini?" Harry asked her shortly after they'd finished their laughter.

Delphini gave him an incredibly bright smile and responded "Amazing!" the girl had clearly been happy with another day at Hogwarts and seeing as he wanted to get to know her further, Harry returned her smile as he furthered his questioning.

"What'd you end up doing?"

His question was simple and innocent, or so he'd thought at least.

Delphini's frown made him rethink it, but she'd still answered it.

"I went to visit a few people who I'm told were… family friends — luckily everything righted itself from that sour note and now I've got a group to spend time with," she turned the frown that settled on her face back to a smile as she eyed him up, "Unless I'm spending it with you — not to sound too forward."

She'd tried to end her words sounding bashful, but Harry knew the girl was anything but. Her hesitance to get up off him when they'd first crashed into another mixed with her forwardness for one-on-one time at Hogsmeade betrayed any such notion.

Still, Harry could enjoy the girl's company if she proved friendly enough and family to Sirius — and by extension, him, as she'd claimed.

"Not at all," Harry replied to ease her 'worry' at sounding too forward, "Would you tell me a bit about your family? Sirius didn't mention any other Black's too often."

That was essentially the truth too, with Sirius only mentioning his little brother or mother in passing while he'd much rather speak about the Potter's.

"Sure, I can do that — what is it you'd want to know?" Delphini leaned forward while smiling at him.

"How big's your family? I know you said they lived in Australia but I think that's about all you said of them other than a Great Uncle Rosair?" Harry was sure he'd flunked at remembering the Great Uncle's name, but he'd probably been close enough… hopefully.

Delphini laughed at his attempt, "Rosier, but you were close! As for my family's size, it's only me, an aunt and her two children," Delphini looked a little nervous when she added on, "That's why I was hoping to get your permission to use property from the Black Estate for my year at Hogwarts — I'd like to have them close by while I'm here in Magical Britain."

Harry supposed that made sense and moved on to another topic after answering her subtle request, one that was far less serious and far more for his own curious sake.

"I'll take a look at the ledger before too long, but tell me something… what's Australia like?"

September 12, 1998

Saturday Morning

A little more than a week had passed since his discussion with Romilda Vane and the rest of his housemates and since that time, there'd only been one minor incident; that being one a Gryffindor had done to two young Slytherin students.

It wasn't one of Vane's group, nor was it any of the older students he'd have thought of that could be potentially problematic; it was a Third Year Gryffindor boy who'd lost an older mentor during the Battle of Hogwarts. He'd wanted revenge for his friend and figured that cursing a few firsties in Slytherin would give it to him.

When Harry talked with the boy after McGonagall already had, it was one-hundred percent clear that the boy almost immediately regretted his actions, but it didn't matter — the damage was done and an example had to be made. There was no stopping an imminent expulsion from the school for the lad.

Other than that singular incident which had been taken care of within six hours of its happening, all was quiet in the Castle, almost eerily so when considering the violent 'prank' that'd been played a week before.

Harry sipped the last of his morning tea and finally removed himself from both his thoughts along with his room; it was time to meet the morning world and more importantly, it was time to hear Daphne thank him. He didn't mean to think of that for his ego or arrogance, he just wanted another reason to see the fit blonde witch with the perfect personality.

And thankfully enough, he would.

As soon as he emerged from the boys' dorms, he saw Daphne, Delphini and Tracey all standing in a semi-circle talking while leaving a fourth spot that was very likely left for him.

"Good morning Harry!"

"Morning Harry!"

"Took you long enough didn't it?"

Tracey had greeted him first, the energetic girl often being the one who'd notice him first whenever he made to spend time with her and her friend.

Delphini was next with an even more casual greeting, but one that sounded as friendly and energetic as Tracey's.

Daphne as usual waited for whoever was in their company to go before her, then she'd finally greeted him with a sarcastic question rather than a pleasantry.

Harry realized in the week that'd gone by where they'd done not much other than small talk that he'd already grown to like the Slytherin peers of his and he reflected that in his greeting back to the three girls in present company.

"Good morning Delphini, Tracey — I'm glad you missed me, Daphne," he side-stepped as soon as the word was out of his mouth but Daphne had anticipated that action and thrown a jelly-legs jinx at him; it seemed to be among her favourite spells for showing a range of emotions from annoyed to shy and as a result of that, he'd already been holding onto a nearby pillar.

"Daphne!" Tracey turned on her friend and for once, she was the one who had a hold of the other girl's ear while Delphini took that chance to dash forward towards him.

He didn't hear the scolding Tracey was sure to be giving Daphne because Delphini had thrown her arms around him to bring him into a hug and when he was level with her, the girl whispered into his ear.

"Thanks for protecting us, Harry."

She sounded sweet and breathy, but it made him confused — she hadn't shown any concern about the actions of Vane, if anything she seemed indifferent when they were discussing the girl. He'd just assumed she liked the company more than she cared to let on, yet those words were contradictory to what he'd assumed.

"No problem…" he'd returned when he realized the other two girls were looking at them and Delphini showed no signs of letting go as she held her cheeks against his.

His response had been what the girl wanted and she'd let go of him, stepping back while looking towards the floor in another show of bashfulness. Harry didn't believe it for a moment and he imagined the two girls with them didn't either.

"Sorry I didn't really believe that it'd work Harry — but I want to say I did have more faith in you than Daphne!" Tracey said that while smiling and when she'd finished her words, she imitated Delphini by throwing her arms around his neck to bring him into a hug, she even whispered into his hears too, much to the annoyance of the other girls present, saying "I don't have anything I want to say, I just want to make Daphne jealous… is it working?"

Harry nodded while in the hug and whispered back in an exaggeratedly affectionate manner, "Yes," after witnessing the look on Daphne's face, that being a mix of irritation and impatience.

Tracey pulled back after waiting another few seconds and winked at him before stepping back beside her friend.

Finally, Daphne took a step forward and curtsied to him, making eye contact after doing so.

"I admit that my faith in you was incredibly low-" a cough from Tracey made Daphne correct her statement, "-bordering on non-existent. But in my defence, your housemates aren't known for siding with you very faithfully… still, I suppose I should say thank you for keeping to your word and allowing us to get to know without fear of persecution," Daphne smirked at him and winked, "You're not completely uncouth, Potter. Perhaps in another few months, I'll even manage to grant you my friendship."

Harry smiled back at the girl and caught her when Tracey pushed her over in an attempt to force a hug… needless to say, that was the last he saw of the two girls for the evening, as Daphne tore off after Tracey with curses on her tongue.

Delphini treated the event as if it were a normal affair and granted, it wasn't totally rare. With that said, the girl held out her arm for him to grab in the attempt to secure an escort to breakfast, Harry had no reason to decline and took hold of it. He'd take the girl to breakfast at a leisurely pace, all the while making small talk with her about random bits of meaningless topics — it reminded him of all the time he'd spent with Blaise thus far.

Zabini had proven elusive in every topic that covered his life, history, family or anything else that could be remotely personal. Yet for whatever reason, the boy continued staying on the outskirts of Harry's group, not ever fully joining a conversation but offering up the rare one-liner or a fact on the topic at hand. Delphini wasn't totally like that, though the girl always seemed to be nearby and sometimes she was a little too awkward while in his company… her attitude almost reminded him of, well, him — only a younger him when he had a crush on Cho Chang back in Fourth and Fifth Year.

"Harry?" Delphini asked, looking expectantly at him for a reply to a question he'd missed while musing on the morning walk.

"Sorry, I missed that… daydreaming," he offered the single word excuse and wished he hadn't the moment after, it sounded weak even to him.

"Uh-huh," Delphini replied with a light snicker, "I was saying, those two aren't exactly what you'd think of with all the stereotypes on this house," she'd pointed to the green on her robes when she'd gotten to the word 'this'.

Harry nodded a few times at her words for they were exactly correct. After spending so long at Hogwarts and witnessing the animosity for so long, one could almost believe that all Slytherin's were like Draco or in some cases, actually dangerous. It was a change of pace when he'd come to know Daphne and Tracey, Blaise too to some degree — he'd expected their mutual companionship to end horribly within the first day he'd gotten to know them, yet here they were more than a week later with fewer walls between them.

"You're right, but I'd say you aren't either," he replied hastily when noticing the girl rolling her eyes at another lack of response.

Delphini cocked her head, "How so? I'm not exactly playful like them."

"You're also not pointlessly rude or intolerable of others like a good deal of the students who didn't return," Harry pointed out, as the girl wouldn't know about students she'd never had the chance to meet.

"Point taken," Delphini admitted, turning away from him for a few seconds before turning back with a sneer reminiscent of Draco's, "Hurry up and bring me to breakfast, Potter," she'd practically spat out his last name all the while her eyes showed almost genuine hate.

Harry laughed at the impression she'd given and Delphini joined him shortly after, the two turning the corner to see the Great Hall when they were finished.

"Was that better, Harry?" Delphini asked with a wink.

He nodded his head, "Yeah, brilliant really, had me thinking you hated my guts for a few seconds."

Delphini scoffed and nudged him in the ribs as they entered through the doors.

"Perish the thought."


mwinter1: Glad to have you then and thank you! Hope you enjoyed this chapter!

Godric777: Thank you very much - sorry for taking so long to answer PMs too haha!

Destru: Thank you - hope this one was as good! Definitely shocked Daphne and definitely annoyed with Luna for snitching on her! rip Tonks too, almost brought her back haha. The pairing will be Harry/Delphini unless enough a majority want a multi pairing.

Matt9917: Maybe, maybe... hope you enjoyed that certain girls portrayal too haha.

PriceTage: I'll pm you if I ever make that haha, thank you for liking the story too!

Jthomajba: Hope you liked it then!

TheGreatBubbaJ: Oh yeah, this won't be fully normal, but it'll be the closest of all his years to that.

GreenEyesAreAwesome: Thank you, hope you enjoy!

ThingsCanBeTwhoThings: Tyvm, I love romance and fluff haha. As for that Daphne 3, who doesn't like a good bit of Haphne or Hacey eh? That explanation will come too, eventually. Thank you very much!