Sirius had been shocked and confused. He had been summoned to the manor for dinner. Shockingly both Remus and Fleamont had the offer extended as well. He had maintained a relationship with his mother and grandfather Arcturus since his son went to school but this wasn't common. They would normally show up at Grimmauld for dinner with little notice. He was worried something was wrong as he wasn't expecting a trip to the manor till his son was home. If nothing more then quenching his curiosity he had gone. It seems they had simply wished to speak about plans for Harry's training over the holidays. They had thought it best to speak of such things before Harry was home in case there was some disagreement. It had really not been a valid concern. When it came to Harry, they tended to be able to agree easily.

His confusion though had come when Kreacher had vanished. The elf served at the manor when Harry was at school. He had literally dropped the food he was holding at the table and vanished without a word to them. He could see worry on others.

Pollux looked at his daughter. "Has the elf lost his mind? He is old."

Wallburga was as confused as her father. "No." But after a pause. "He would only leave if he was summoned."

Arcturus barked as he looked around. "Summoned by who? We are all at the table except….."

Sirius went pale as a sheet. "My son. He always comes when Harry calls. He has orders to."

Remus put a hand on his old friend and tried to reassure him. "There may be nothing wrong. Harry wouldn't know."

Fleamont agreed with the man. "Harry wouldn't know we were at dinner. And Kreacher usually doesn't serve food here."

Before they could respond Kreacher suddenly appeared. "Master need to come. Master need to come now."

Sirius shot out of his chair. "My son? My son summoned you? Is he okay?"

Kreacher shook his head. "Master flee school. He and Master Fred be needing you."

Arcturus stood. "You will take us all to the boy now."

Wallburga motioned to the tray on the floor and transformed it into a portkey of sorts. "It will take us all."

Sirius, Remus and all of Harry's grandparents grabbed on to the platter. Kreacher told them nothing else as he went to take them. Sirius had so many scenarios running through his head and none of them were good. There was no good reason his son should have fled the school. Filius, Minerva and Hagrid were all there, not to mention the centaurs in the woods. And as much as Sirius hated to think of the man, Severus was as well. He may head another house but he looked out for Harry. Even Hugo would be trusted to watch him. Hugo had left the aurors to teach over a year before Harry began school but he had sworn to both Sirius and Moody to watch over the boy when he came. Hugo had often seen Harry at the department.

They had no idea what to expect and made sure to have their wands drawn when they felt the portkey go. They hoped Harry was safe but they needed to be prepared. They had no idea why or how he and Fred had fled.

They arrived on the grounds of an old manor and Sirius heard. "Papa."

Sirius was amazed when his son flung himself at him. He held his son to him. "Cub are you okay? What happened?"

Fred stood off to the side and spoke as Harry seemed shaken. "We were trapped in the woods. We had to flee."

Arcturus looked at Kreacher. "You best go to school. Find Minerva and Filius. They will need to know. Bring them."

Harry found his voice as the elf disappeared. "Where are we Papa? What is this place?"

Remus was not certain. "I have never seen it. How did you boys get here? Why?"

Fred shrugged. "Our only way out was a hippogriff. He chose our destination, we had no way to direct him."

Minerva, Hugo and Filius all arrived moments later. Minerva turned to Harry. "What happened? You left many worried."

Hugo agreed. "Hagrid is seeing to George and the others. They alerted us to you being in the woods."

Fleamont motioned towards the manor. "Perhaps we should head up. The boys can explain when they are seated."

Sirius agreed as he could see both boys were close to shock. "Hopefully our host is not opposed to guests."

Pollux led the way. He had an odd look but he didn't explain much. "If he is home he will not mind. He will be waiting."

The man said no more as he lead the group towards the manor. They had no idea how he knew where they were. They were not that surprised he said nothing about where it was. Pollux had always been one to keep close to his chest what he knew. But he seemed confident that there was no concern to where they were. It was not a Black home that was certain. Arcturus did not recognize it and it was not one of the three that belonged to Pollux. Besides he spoke about the owner.

They found themselves led into the house when they got to the doors by an elf. Though they were allowed into a sitting room with a fire there was no sign of their host. The elf though re-appeared with hot chocolate as the boys were pushed into chairs.

Sirius was relieved when his son told him what happened. And worried. "I am glad you think quickly. But who?"

Pollux motioned to a crest above the fireplace. "Flamel. I have been once when Irma and I first wed."

A voice came from behind. "My goddaughter. It has been many a year."

Harry saw an old man in the door. But his eyes went to the phoenix with him. "Fawkes. I thought you at school."

Sirius watched his son as the phoenix came and landed on him. But then he turned to the man. "How are we here?"

Flamel motioned for them all to sit. "The phoenixes are not the only animals I have a link to. Buckbeak knew to come."

Harry had been deep in conversation with Fawkes. He had not even thought to call him. "Grandpa Galrod."

Pollux smiled a bit. "He told you that you were always safe in the woods. That you had more then one friend in them."

Sirius let out a breath. "I have never been so grateful for your bond with the elves."

Nicholas had not seen any of the Blacks since after his goddaughter died, and even that had been rare. Since the death of his wife he had been a bit of a recluse. While he only bred phoenixes, he had spent time with other magic animals as well. He had spent time in the woods with Elysian, he had learned from her as much as she had from him. Buckbeak had taken Harry and Fred to the one place the bird understood they would be safe. Galrod had spoken to Nicholas about both Harry and Tonks since he began training them. Though the centaurs were Harry's main aid, the hippogriffs could be trusted.

Minerva finally spoke. "It best we return to school. It will raise concern if we do not."

Wallburga saw both her son and grandson's worry. "It is only days till the holidays. And we need not raise suspicion."

Sirius reluctantly agreed with his mother. He turned to his son. "Stay on guard. And you go no where alone, ever."

Fred piped up for the first time. "We won't let him even if he tried. We have his back."

Harry slowly nodded. "Fawkes promises to be close. I will be okay."

Nicholas looked at Harry. "If you need help he is only a call. I swore to Elysian I would always watch over her family."

Pollux remained behind as the others went to take the boys back to school. He wished to speak to Nicholas for a time. Only Sirius went with Harry and Fred, well and the teachers. They were taken to Hagrid's hut where the boys were soon mobbed by their friends who had been allowed to remain at Hagrid's till their return. Filius went to lead them up to the castle after Harry had a goodbye with his father. Sirius stayed a bit longer and spoke to Hugo for a time.

Hugo assured the man before he left. "I may be retired but my guard is up. I will keep my promise to you and Alastor."


Harry and Fred were both a bit shaken that night. While they both tried to pretend they were not they knew the risk they had been in. Harry felt such guilt that his friend could have been harmed because of him. The twins were not just his cousins but some of his closest friends. Beyond Hermione, Fred was likely his closest, even over Draco and Neville. He would never want Fred hurt because of him. But the twins were not about to stop protecting him and keeping an eye on him.

Harry was relieved that classes were done and simply two more tests before end of term. Harry knew that Quirell was involved in what happened even if he could not prove it. And he was determined to never be alone with the man.

It seemed Minerva had an early Christmas gift. She summoned Harry to her office the day before leaving. "Come in."

Harry was a bit worried when he saw both Filius and Quirrel. Something was off. "Is something wrong mam?"

Filius motioned Harry to a chair. "There is nothing concerning. We just wished to speak to you about next term."

Minerva added as Harry sunk into the chair. "About the tutoring you have been receiving. It was brought to my attention."

Quirell did not look pleased. "There is nothing against a teacher offering tutoring. He has improved in class."

Filius shot the man a look. "And there is nothing wrong with a student turning down the offer unless they are failing."

Minerva turned to Harry. "I am led to believe that you were not the one to ask for tutoring."

Harry was a bit worried as the man was near. "I am top of his class Professor and I didn't see it necessary."

Quirell smirked not caring who had seen it. "I would think a student would show appreciation for a teacher's aid."

Harry winced a bit at that. "I appreciate any help sir. I think there are others who might benefit more."

Minerva spoke up. "No student will be required to do tutoring. Or threatened with detention for not attending."

The man stood to leave. "I had nothing but the boy's best interest at heart. I was simply ensuring he met his potential."

Filius didn't let him play victim. "As Harry's head, that is my concern. If he needs tutoring I will be happy to help."

With that the man stormed out of the office. Harry was a bit worried as he looked at the other two. He had been told by his cousins and friends he should go to them. That him being forced into tutoring was not okay and not right. But Harry had not wanted to cause more issues with the man. Harry was not sure how either of them knew that Harry had been forced into tutoring. He had not even told Papa about it and he knew the man would not have told. He thought his friends.

Filius and Minerva shared a look. They had spoken a time before they had decided that this was the best option. They had known Harry was worried about angering the man. But after the woods they knew it had to be done.

Harry finally found his voice. "I am grateful. But I don't want to ang….I don't want him to think I don't appreciate it."

Neither missed his slip. Minerva assured him. "This would have been ended long ago if you had told us."

Filius agreed. "If any student needs aid they but need to ask. As your head of house it is my place."

Harry smiled at the little man. "Papa always told me to speak to you. How? Draco?"

Minerva shook her head. "No. Though I believe they were tempted. Your grandsire."

Filius saw his confusion. "Pollux. After a certain run in with the man he was interested and learned. Then the woods."

Harry was reminded of when Pollux stopped him coming from the woods with his grandsire. "He never let on."

Minerva laughed a little. "He does keep things closed lipped. We should allow you to get to bed as you leave tomorrow."

Filius led him from the office. "I will see you to the tower since it is late."

Harry looked at the little professor along the way. "Thank you sir. I know I should have spoke up sooner."

Filius simply assured him. "I know it can be intimidating dealing with a professor. But know I am always here."

They almost got to Ravenclaw when a ghost appeared and told Filius he was needed. It seemed Peeves was misbehaving and besides Severus, Filius was the only one who could control him. Severus seemed to be in town at the moment. Confident that Harry was just around the corner from his tower Filius left him. Harry had enough time to get back before curfew.

Harry was just nearing home when someone snagged him by the arm. "Out after curfew Mr Potter."

Harry jerked when he saw the man standing behind him. "Curfew doesn't start for ten minutes Sir. And it is Black."

The man was eying him and didn't let go. "You being out late is a bad habit. Asking for detention like your dear dad."

Harry pulled away from him. "I had a meeting with the headmistress as you know. Now I need to get to my dorm."

The man let go of him but kept him from going. "You and I will be spending time together soon."

Harry jerked away from him. "I'd watch what you are saying sir. One might take it as inappropriate."

The man growled under his breath. "There is nothing inappropriate about a teacher wanting the best for his student."

Harry turned to leave. "You were not my daddy's teacher. What was your excuse then?"

The man pulled him in. "You have no idea what you speak of. I'd watch my tongue."

Suddenly out of no where the man was being pelted by water balloons. Harry could see no one and the man in anger stormed off down the hall screaming at Peeves. Harry was shocked when a ghost appeared but it was Sir Nicholas. He knew the Gryffindor house ghost but he certainly did not expect aid from another house's ghost. Especially against a teacher.

The ghost simply smiled when Harry thanked him. "I remember the marauders fondly. I will watch over their son."


Harry felt better when he went to bed to know when he came back in January he would not have tutoring. He would still be in class with the man but there was no reason for him to be alone with him. Filius had also promised him if the man gave him detention that Filius would take the detention himself. A head of house could cancel a detention if unfair or take them. Usually teachers didn't step in on each other but could if it was called for like this.

His friends had no idea what happened but they could see the difference. They were happy as they headed home on the train for Christmas that he was in a better place. Hermione was coming after Christmas to spend a few days at the manor.

Harry was surprised to see the twins. "I thought you guys were staying at school. Though I don't know why."

Draco agreed. "Thought you had lost your mind when you turned coming with us down. Wanted quality time with Ron."

Fred laughed a bit at that. "No we decided to embrace our Black roots. Just not the way you are thinking."

Harry guessed. "Aunt Lucretia? I have never known you guys to stay with her. And why not Percy and Ron?"

George explained. "Really with Charlie. But he will not be back from a game for a few days. Aunty Lucretia until then."

Fred added. "Percy decided to stay at school and study. Though Charlie offered to come get him in a few days."

Hermione had to wonder. "Ron? I don't see him refusing to leave."

George laughed. "He got himself uninvited. He was told it was school or with Aunt Muriel. He opted for school."

Charlie was not one to put up with Ron and his issues. Charlie only had an one bedroom flat but he had thought to have the boys at the Burrow with his parents and Ginny in Egypt seeing Bill. His parents would have allowed it. But Lucretia had offered to let them all stay at her manor. The twins knew they could have stayed with Harry but they had liked the idea. They were going to spend two nights with their big brother at his flat for a boys' night when he got back from games. They would see their friends at Black and Malfoy manor plenty before going back to school. The Blacks would be hosting their annual Christmas party of course. It seems Ron had got into a bit of an argument with Charlie via owl and had found himself not invited. Muriel seemed to be used as time out.

Harry and his friends were happy to see them and insisted the twins had to come visit often. When they got off the train in London they found Sirius, Lucius and Mr Granger waiting for them.

Fred was a bit confused as he did not see his Aunt any where. "Did she forget us? We don't have coin for the bus."

Sirius tried to look serious. "Did you miss the owl? She decided you were too much mischief and is not having you."

Remus laughingly assured the boys as he appeared next to them. "I will take you boys. I offered to save her a trip."

Harry was surprised when they were leaving that his Papa summoned the bus. "Why not the portkey? We always do."

Sirius motioned his son to get on the bus. "You are going with the twins to the coast for the night. Moony will take you."

Harry was a bit worried about that. "Why? I love Aunt Lucretia but I thought the manor or at least Grimmauld."

Remus shared a look with Sirius but smiled. "Just some boring business. Your Papa has to get back to work."

Harry was confused. "You are never at work this late, only the street aurors. And you should be off for break."

Sirius sighed. "I am just doing an errand for Uncle Moody. I promise I will collect you in the morning."

Harry got on the bus but he had this odd feeling something was off. The marauders shared another look before Remus took both boys on the bus. Remus had indeed promised Lucretia to get the twins for her that was the truth. But there was more to Sirius going into work for the night. Harry could have been at Grimmauld with his grandparents for the evening but they had decided against it. They didn't want Harry concerned and he would be distracted this way.

Harry was distracted a bit but by the time they got to the ocean he was feeling some what better. He often visited the home even though he and Papa had their own coastal home. Aunty Lucretia had been a special part of his childhood.

Lucretia smiled as the boys all piled into the house. "It is nice to have some company in this big house."

Fred grinned as he hugged her. "I am so glad you'd have us. Even if Charlie will as well."

George nodded as her elf took their bags from them. "Christmas at school may be nice, but this will be so much better."

Harry found himself in the den. He smiled at the decor. "I have never been here during the holidays."

Lucretia motioned to some food she had called for. "I usually come to the manor. I am sure you boys are hungry."

Fred happily took a sandwich though he was tempted by a cookie. "I am famished. Seems forever since breakfast."

Harry sunk down but he was still lost in thought. George tried to assure him. "It's nothing. You don't mind a sleepover."

Lucretia agreed with the twins though she knew more. "I am sure you can find enough to do here for the night."

Harry was soon drawn into the talk and food. They spent most of the day playing games together and even some time on the water. Lucretia had promised her nephew she would do her best to keep Harry from thinking about him and being worried. Seeing Harry laugh with the twins through the day she knew she had kept her promise. Her and her husband had never had kids, but they had adored all their nieces and nephews, and each other's. And that passed on to Molly and Sirius' kids.

Lucretia watched the boys as they headed to bed. "His Papa will be here to pick him up tomorrow. No worries."