Chapter Fourteen


When Harry entered the Great Hall, he headed towards his house table with his friends by his sides. It was great to be back, he thought with a glance at the Head table. Professor Dumbledore looked older than he had looked in a long time but when he saw Harry he seemed to be relieved but then immediately suspicious. He probably thought Voldemort kidnapped him, brainwashed him and sent him back to get juicy little tidbits on Dumbledore. He almost laughed at the thought. He knew very well Voldemort would never leave him alive and to top it all off he would dump his deceased carcass somewhere public, where someone- or everyone- would find him.

Getting his thoughts out of its downward spiral, he looked up to see one set of black eyes watching him without blinking. These weren't kind, warm eyes like Hagrid's, no, these were cold, suspicious and he even had to admit they looked creepy the way they were watching right now. He supressed a shudder as he averted his gaze from Severus Snape's. Sitting down he waited for McGonagall to bring bring in the sorting hat to sing its song. As he listened he realized there was another not so hidden message in its song. It mentioned that they shouldn't think of things the way they used to because things were going to change- not necessarily for the better- if they didn't. When it stopped singing its painfully obvious song, he heard Hermione start to explain, what he already knew, to Ron and himself. He plastered an interested look on his face and pretended to be paying attention. Of course, Hermione was too absorbed to trying to explain this to his slightly intelligence challenged friend, to notice his lack of interest. Neville, who was sitting near them, was hanging on every word as if it would prove to be important. It was important but it wasn't as if they didn't know it already.

He looked up and saw the sorting was almost half over and furtively glanced towards Draco. He met Harry's gaze and they came to a silent agreement, that they would have to act how they normally would, before turning their attention back to the sorting. He did acknowledge that bickering with his now friend would be infinately more difficult but he would manage. For the team, he thought dramatically before he noticed the old man was talking.

Oh gods, here goes the close to never ending speech from the man who was so old he shouldn't be able to talk. He sighed and blocked his yearly spiel out. He was just blabbing on about unity and how they weren't allowed to wander halls past six o'clock. Nothing new. He needed all his energy to be able to stop himself from falling asleep when the unavoidable meeting would occur between him, the old man and some other order members he was too lazy to remember. All the Weasley Wizard Wheezes were restricted, he ackowledged with a slight grin. Come on, get on with the food! he said in his head.

Finally, he finished his long winded speech and spread his skeleton like hands. How does he even stand up, he asked himself in his mind. He was also thinknig that he should stop talking to himself. Grabbing some long awaited food he started eating at a polite pace while Ron decided he wanted to try for the most neandrathal-like award. He slid down the bench away from him with a look of disgust as the thing he had called a friend ripped everything apart and ate while barely swallowing, like rabid animal. This would be sure haunt his dreams. He could just see it now, Ron circling a roast turkey with a predatory gleam in his eyes before pouncing on it before ripping it apart with his mouth. When he was done with it you could barely tell it had once been food. Gods, he thought to himself, he had to stop thinking like this before he wouldn't be able to stop the torture. Thanks to his overactive imagination he'd never be able to look at Ron the same way again. He turned back to his own food before Dumblydoor decided it would be a good idea to find out where he had been all summer. Actually, he was surprised he hadn't sent on of his little minions he called teachers to fetch him already. More time to eat, he thought happily with a shrug.

After he had eaten the majority of what he was going to eat, with Ron beside him anyway, a shadow appeared over the table in front of him. Frowning, he turned to see the potions master looming over him with an extra intimidating glare. Oh yea, Harry had disappeared on his watch. No wonder he seemed so snarly. The surly man merely turned and headed to the entrance hall, obviously expecting Harry to follow. And that he did, he didn't want to obey but logic was winning this war. It would be of his best interests to follow, otherwise he'd have the man hating him even more than he did now. A plus was getting away from the creature from the deepest depths of the earth, obviously not meant for interacting with humans, that seemed to have not eaten in about a century. He almost breathed a sigh of relief until he remembered where he was going and the conversation that was about to ensue. The old man would be all calm and forgiving while the greasy potions master would petition for his expulsion. Oooh, he could almost feel the joy. Well, he was gonna play dumb and hope his letter worked on the seemingly omnicient Headmaster. One day he was going to surprise the man so much he wouldn't be able to get the expression off his face. Ever.

The remainder of the trek to the Headmaster's office was spent in absolute silence, Harry occupying his mind with how in the world the man made his cloak billow like that. The Potions Master was thinking about how he would love to kill the boy that was following him and even thought of how he could accomplish this without being caught. He eventually came up with the saddening thought that there was no way he could ever get away with it. Dumbledore would kill him- no scatch that- send him to Azkaban and Voldemort would torture him for eternity. This was a lose lose situation. When Dumbledore arrived they were sitting on chairs as far away from each other as they could and while Harry was looking at some gadgets on his desk while Snape looked at the wall, unblinkingly. He was like some sort of cat, a very evil, creepy cat.

The old man sat down at his desk and turned his gaze pensively on Harry. Harry returned his gaze making himself look somewhat confused. The Headmaster saw his confused look and steepled his fingers while asking him, "Harry, do you know why you are here?"

"No," Harry said shaking his head looking concerned. Snape made a choking noise in his throat at this.

"May I ask, then, why you were not at your relative's house for the most part of the summer?" He asked.

"What do you mean sir? You told me to leave. You said it wasn't safe any longer and the protections on the house were failing." Harry answered and waited for the other man to respond to this piece of news while looking increasingly alarmed by the moment.

Dumbledore paused, studying his face but didn't find anything because he looked even more worried when he asked, "What do you mean?"

"You sent me a letter, sir," he said, "You mean you didn't send me a letter?" He asked sounding almost scared.

The old man shook his head and asked, "And may I see this letter, Harry?"

Harry reached for it in his pocket and supplied, "I recognized your writing on it."

He passed the worn letter to the man's out stretched hand and he started to read the letter. When he was finished he passed the letter to the Potions Master who also read it.

Dumbledore looked to Snape inquiringly who then summed it up, "It does look like your writing, sir."

Harry kept his face worried looking but inside he was cheering. This worked out exactly as he planned, James and Sirius would be proud.

"You may leave," the Headmaster dismissed him, ligns appearing anew on his ancient face. He wasn't so omnicient after all, Harry thought smugly as he left the office of the old man's. It was going to become even more obvious in the near future that the old man couldn't protect them like they all thought. He grinned in anticipation as he walked to Gryffindor Tower. It was an expression that one would find more at home on someone such as Draco Malfoy than the Golden-Boy, Harry Potter.


Thanks to- dancatdplc, crazyginnygirl and The Mystic Elf for reviewing to this chapter.

I know there are lots of people who have me on their fav and author alert lists but I don't see any reviews. If you read, I want you to review, Please!

Also, I know last chappie's formatting was terrible and I'll fix it later. When I feel like it.