Chapter 45 – All Was RightThe train whistled twice, startling Harry a bit as he stood on the platform with Ron and Hermione, all three of them joking about Snape's unfortunate mishap in the Great Hall that morning at breakfast. Harry knew, of course, that Remus and Sirius were responsible, but seeing Snape with bright pink robes, sporting a clown wig was probably the highlight of the year.
At the whistle, the three of them hurried onto the train, waving a quick goodbye to Hagrid and dodging around Malfoy to get to their compartment in the back where Neville, Ginny and Luna were talking together.
Harry quickly went and sat down next to Ginny, throwing her a quick smile as she leaned over to whisper to him.
He smiled and nodded. "Yes, thanks for that. I haven't spent much time with the two of them for a while….for a moment it felt like it was before."
She reached down, inconspicuously grabbing his hand and giving it a short squeeze before they both leaned back and joined in the already growing conversation with the others in the compartment.
Sirius leaned against the rail on the back of the train, feeling the breeze rush by quickly and the landscape rush by even quicker. He saw the far structure of Hogwarts grow smaller and smaller until it was obscured by a hill and all that surrounded them was the green countryside.
He ducked back into the train, walking down the narrow hallway with some trepidation about what exactly he was going to be doing for the next seven hours.
He stopped short as he passed by Harry's familiar compartment, hearing laughter from inside and smiling as he recognized Harry's laughter intermingled with the rest.
As he reached the front compartment where Remus was, typically, over absorbed in a book, Sirius relaxed as all was right with the world.
The ride home could only be called "typically Sirius". Harry had no idea that his Godfather had ever acquired a muggle driving license, much more that he actually had driven a car, but Harry was sure there was a reason for that.
Sirius had taken grate pride in buying a stylish little muggle car called a MiniCoop and seemed to enjoy zooming in and out of lanes as fast as possible, something that in other cars would have probably killed them. The inside had been magically enhanced so that they all had plenty of room, but it didn't always seem like the car had enough room on the road.
Despite Sirius' constant reassurances that everything was fine, both Remus and Harry were thankful when they reached the house in one piece.
Harry glanced again into the room, but immediately looked back at Sirius.
"What am I supposed to do with it?"
Sirius threw up his hands, exasperated. "I don't know, Harry: Sleep, leave your clothes on the floor, graffiti your walls! I don't care!"
Still looking doubtful, Harry finally stepped into the overly large room, sorting through his new memories of his life in this room. It was nothing like his cupboard under the stairs, or even his "bedroom" at the Dursley's. For one thing, it looked like a real bedroom: A four-poster bed decorated in dark red sat in between the windows; two tall dressers stood on another wall, the tops of them decorated with odds and ends; a handsome wooden roll top desk stood alone on another wall, a stack of paper on it and a few books; a wall bookshelf was above the desk, filed to the brim with books; and the last wall was covered with long closet, it's door closed and decorated with quidditch posters. The walls were decorated with posters of wizard singing groups, framed pictures of Harry's friends and family, and awards for quidditch and school.
He didn't quite know what to say.
Harry finally walked over to his bed, setting his trunk at the foot of it and sitting down on the soft covers. He looked around, taking in every detail, each one triggering more and more memories of the new life that Harry had been acquiring ever since their trip to the past. He saw the trophy on his dressers he had won at the Junior Quidditch Championship when he was eight. He saw the picture of him, Sirius and Remus when they went to America, more specifically Disney World, and laughed as Sirius continually made rude gestures towards the large mouse that kept trying to pose in the picture with them. He noticed the faded crayon marks on the wall where he had experimented on how far he could go without Sirius killing him when he was four. He saw the crack on one corner of the wall where he and Ron had been "practicing quidditch" indoors and Harry had "accidentally" hit a bludger hard into one wall, knocking a complete hole in it. He remembered Sirius leaving the mark there so that even when he got old he would remember (and constantly rub it in) how crazy Harry had been as a kid.
His gaze finally landed back on Sirius who seemed to be reminiscing as well, a small, far away smile on his face. Remus also stood in the doorway, holding something behind his back and glancing at Sirius with amusement.
Finally, Remus cleared his throat and stepped into the room, holding out a letter for Harry.
"Already received a letter from Ginny," he said cheekily, seeming to get more joy when Harry turned a bit red and snatched the letter away quickly. "You two were cozy on the train."
Sirius seemed to perk up at this remark. "What's this I hear?" He walked into the room to stand next to Remus as Harry quickly glanced over the letter, trying to ignore his guardian's inquisitive stares.
"No, I'm not reading it aloud," Harry commented, his eyes not leaving Ginny's handwriting. There wasn't anything embarrassing in it, just Ginny wanting to know what Harry had planned for the World Cup that year, but Harry wasn't going to tell Sirius and Remus that. Let them wonder.
Life with Sirius and Remus was surely an experience Harry would never forget. Before dinner that evening, Sirius had successfully turned Remus' hair bright pink, completely distressed the two house elves, tricked Harry into eating a canary cream and jinxed the front doorknob so that whoever touched it started singing an off-key rendition of "I'm a Little Teapot". Remus had retaliated for his hair by making Sirius' nose grew larger, having his resemble a certain potions teacher which cause Sirius to panic and shave off all his hair and upon realizing the mistake of his actions, Sirius took multiple hair replenishing potions that made his sprout long bushy hair that rivaled Hermione's.
All in all, it was a most enjoying afternoon and evening. Harry was relieved to hear that neither Sirius nor Remus tried to pretend like their coking was eatable and always had the house elves cook the meals. Tinkle and Dinkle (Harry figured Sirius must have found two elves with those names on purpose), turned out to be much like the house elves at Hogwarts, eager to please and obviously adored being servants of "good Master Sirius and Master Remus". Tinkle had actually been James and Lily's house elf during the last few months of their lives (Harry had not recalled seeing her in the house the few times he was there) and had been overjoyed when Sirius asked her to come work for him and Remus. Because of this, Tinkle seemed to want to obey Harry more than Sirius and Remus which gave him a certain upper hand during prank wars when both Sirius and Remus turned on him. Dinkle, on the other hand, had been an unemployed house elf who had (with much tears) resorted to going to Hogwarts for his final employment, but Dumbledore, knowing that Sirius and Remus would need all the help they could get while raising Harry, sent him to the Marauder's house instead.
After dinner activities consisted of Sirius collapsing on the couch and not moving for about an hour to "digest his meal", Remus going to catch up on some of his work (he worked for the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures) he had missed that day and Harry finally getting a chance to explore his room without the fear of Sirius constantly trying to prank him.
After an hour had passed, the dead finally awoke and a bleary eyed Sirius wandered into Harry's room as he was glancing through a few of the more interesting books that he had found on his bookshelf.
"Merlin, you look like Moony, sitting there," Sirius said lazily, collapsing next to Harry on the bed with a loud 'plop'.
"I'm guessing it's him who gave me all these books?" Harry asked, setting the books down and looking over to Sirius.
"But I'm the one who gave you that," Sirius pointed to Harry's Firebolt leaning against the wall next to his desk, "and we all know which one you use more."
They both chuckled, Remus once again walking in on them with a slight grin on his face, holding something behind his back.
"Private party?" He pulled Harry's desk chair over by the bed, sitting down on it and holding out a small black box.
Both Harry and Sirius sat up, curious. "Not anymore," Harry said quickly. "What's that?"
"I'm…not exactly sure," Remus said thoughtfully, turning the box over in his hands a few times. "The Dumbledore from the past gave it to me just before we left. Said it contained some 'reminiscent items' for us."
"Like pictures?" Sirius wondered. "Trinkets?"
Remus gave the box a shake. It didn't make a noise.
He shrugged, looking back down at it. "I wanted to wait till it was just the three of us to open it. I'm pretty sure it's memories."
"Like in a pensive," Sirius explained, seeing Harry's momentarily confused look.
His hand shaking slightly, Remus reached out, opening the lid of the box ever so slowly, Harry and Sirius both leaning forward more to see what was inside.
Indeed, the lid left the box and hit the ground as the three wizards stared at the swirling, silvery material floating around inside.
James face floated forward; he was laughing about something, hardly able to get the words out. "You…you should have seen your face, Moony! Ha! No worries, Snape'll think twice before trying to curse you again!"
His face disappeared and Lily's appeared, tears glistening in her eyes as she stared at something before her that they could see twinkling in her eyes. "Oh I will, James! Yes, yes forever!"
She was replaced by a vengeful Arianna looking like she was brandishing a wand in hand and chasing someone. "You little piece of SLIME! Try that line on me again, Sirius Black and I won't need a reason to shove your wand up your-"
Sirius hastily reached in, swirling her face out of sight and ignoring Remus and Harry's chuckles. Another James floated up, looking scared and sad, tears running down his face. "I don't want you to die for me! That isn't what friendship is about!"
A younger Sirius floated up immediately after, looking solemn, but tears pricking his eyes as well. "Yes it is, James."
Emily's face floated up next, looking slyly at someone next to her. "Sorry, Remus, did you stumble on your words? I think you meant, 'Would you like to go to Hogsmeade with me, Emily' and in that case my answer is, Yes, I would."
Lily floated up last, her face shining with joy as she glanced down at something in her arms. "Oh Merlin…you're here…I'm holding you, finally…I've waited so long for, to see you…you're so tiny." She gave a dry sob. "You're perfect…you're beautiful…" She leaned down, kissing a small baby's head. "I love you, Harry."
The next several hours were spent in reminiscence and memories.
Harry had quickly found his favorite spot in the Marauder's Manor: A large tree in the backyard (more specifically one near the Quidditch Pitch) ad a perfect branch about halfway up where Harry could sit comfortably and read or write and still be able to see the house. Both Sirius and Remus rarely disturbed him there, knowing that every teenage boy needed a place to go where there was no worry of grown-ups, so it was almost a shock to Harry when he saw Sirius walking from the house towards his tree, fiddling Harry's fake snitch in his hand as he walked.
Harry watched his progress all the way until he stood at the trunk of the tree.
"I know you saw me," Sirius said wryly.
Harry shifted a bit so he was in Sirius' view and stuck his head down a bit. "Something wrong?"
Sirius motioned with his head for Harry to climb down. Harry did so with practiced efficency and reached the ground in a few seconds. Glancing up at his Godfather, he frowned. "What is it?"
Sirius reached into his pocket, holding out a cream colored envelope with green writing.
"Yes…" Harry whispered, snatching it quickly away and tearing open his Hogwarts letter. He was surprised, however, when someone small and hard fell out of the envelope hitting the ground. He bent to pick it up, only realizing what it was after he felt the cool metal in his hands.
He rubbed it furiously, making sure he wasn't just imagining the letters as he stared at the head boy badge in his hand. His eyes darted to Sirius who gave him a side smile. "Congratulations, Harry."
Without another word, Harry gave a quick hug to Sirius, laughing slightly and then ran towards the house, shouting for Remus.
A happy ending to an even happier tale.
Sirius watched, tears filling his eyes as he looked at Harry's retreating form. Harry had finally done the one thing Sirius knew he had wanted to do since he was old enough to think.
He measured up to his father.
Sirius knew it wasn't just the badge, the symbol, but rather the idea, for Harry. The idea that he could be like James, in so many ways, that he could still have his father remembered.
As he walked up to the house, slower than Harry, Sirius could practically hear James' voice.
"Alls well that ends well, Padfoot. Alls well that ends well."
He couldn't agree more.
A/N: That's the end folks. Not as long as I thought it was going to be, but after several weeks of writing and rewriting this chapter, I decided to end it here. I hope it lived up to whatever expectations you all held for it and you enjoyed this story as much as I have. Thanks to all of you for reading and reviewing, you kept me going and I'll never forget it! For more info on the "After Fate" parties, check out the Yahoo! Group. Thank you all again, you've been wonderful! Liisa
For more info on the "After Fate" parties, check out the Yahoo! Group.
Thank you all again, you've been wonderful!