Disclaimer: Nothings mine, its all Rowling's.
Chapter 1 – Gifts and Owl Post
Harry Potter trudged up the stairs of number four privet drive after the long car ride from Kings Cross preparing himself for another long summer in his would be prison. He had spent the car ride deep in thought trying to figure out exactly how he felt after the events at the end of his fifth year. He was still upset over the loss of his godfather Sirius Black but his friend Luna Lovegood's unique way of looking at things had provided him with a unique perspective which helped to calm him considerably.
While the death was still fresh in his mind he found he was no longer as upset as he had been. He still felt a lingering sadness and responsibility about what had happened but he now realized it wasn't entirely his fault. The blame for what happened rested on many shoulders, not his alone. He realized most of his remaining anger was from being kept in the dark and manipulated. Currently he was living another example of this, once again being forced back to his 'loving' relatives and not being allowed any say in the matter.
He entered the smallest bedroom setting his trunk on his bed and his owl's cage on the dresser. After filling Hedwig's water dish and another small bowl with owl treats he opened the window so she could come and go as she pleased. She wasn't with him at the moment because he had released her at Kings Cross to spare her having to ride in the trunk of his uncle's car.
Having sorted out his owl he moved to the bed where his trunk sat to unpack a few items he would need over the summer. Lifting the lid he was surprised to find a small present with a note attached. Sitting at his desk he opened the note.
Surprise! I couldn't be any happier now knowing I was able to surprise the great Harry Potter defeater of evil and savior of young redheads everywhere! Just kidding Harry.
This isn't much, just something I came across during the last Hogsmeade weekend. I was going to save it for your birthday but thought it might cheer you up a little after the last few weeks. Don't worry I'm not gonna pull a Hermione and demand you talk, just know that I'm here if you need anything or just want to chat.
Try not to let the muggles get you down. Hopefully we can get you out of there soon. If they give you any trouble let me know and I'll come over and straighten them out for you! I'm glad we were able to become friends over the last year, after everything that happened my first year I don't have too many and I consider you one of my very best.
Please stay safe and remember what I said, if you need anything I'm here for you.
Harry smiled as he read the letter. He had become a lot closer to the youngest Weasley over the last year. Considering her to be one of is best friends too he resolved to write her often over the summer.
Turning his attention to the gift he removed the wrapping from the small box opening it revealing a small figurine of a grim. Exact to the last detail he could actually feel the grim's fur as he softly stroked the coat of the small replica of his godfather's animagus form.
"Padfoot." he said softly.
As he held the small statue it seemed to come to life and began stretching as if waking from a long nap. Looking around it finally seemed to notice Harry and began barking and jumping around in his hand excitedly. Emotions swelled within Harry, his face a mixture of surprise, happiness and pain. Tears trailed down his cheeks while he chuckled at the antics of the small dog which reminded him so much of his godfather during the trip to Kings Cross from Grimauld Place the previous year.
Before he realized what was happening the small dog leapt from his grasp to the floor of his room and sat still. A look of concentration appeared on the dogs face and it began to grow. Harry jumped up in shock stepping back from the rapidly growing dog in front of him. What had only a few moments before been a small figurine of a grim measuring a mere two inches tall was now over a foot tall and quickly growing larger.
After only a few seconds though it seemed a lot longer Harry found himself looking at a life size replica of Padfoot. The dog looked back tilting his head slightly as if trying to figure something out before it seemed to grin and jumped on Harry tackling him to the floor and licking his face. Harry laughed as the dog jumped around the room barking and playing with Harry who was now carefree and happy for the first time in a long while.
"Boy! What is that racket!" bellowed Harry's uncle Vernon as the door was thrown open revealing his angry red face.
Scanning the room, Vernon's face changed from shades of red to purple as he became even angrier at the sight of a large dog in his house.
"That animal will not be staying here!"
The dog in question bared its teeth, a low growl escaping its throat as Vernon entered the room to remove the aforementioned 'animal'. Harry's uncle froze. Fear overtook the rage he had been experiencing as the large dog stood up. Harry stood up from the floor and placed a calming hand around the dog's neck as he addressed his uncle.
"Actually he will be staying with me."
Vernon was clearly confused his need to intimidate and control Harry being overcome by his fear of the beast in front of him.
"You… You keep that thing away from me." He stuttered pointing at Harry's new pet as he backed out of the room.
"I won't let him hurt any of you and he'll stay out of the way with me. As long as you don't bother us, we won't bother you." Harry said with a new sense of confidence that he was quickly gaining being with his new companion.
"Fine." His uncle grunted as he quickly retreated down the stairs to the living room.
Harry closed the door and laughed at the amused expression on the dogs face.
"Well I should probably give you a name shouldn't I?"
The dog sat down and craned its neck back to reveal a charm hanging from a thin cord around its neck. Reaching down Harry took hold of the charm and was again shocked. Sinking to his knees tears began to flow again as he read the word inscribed upon the small piece of metal 'Padfoot'.
Padfoot walked to Harry who grabbed the dog around his neck hugging him tightly and crying softly.
"I'm so sorry Sirius. I love you so much. I miss you."
After a few minutes Harry's crying died down and Padfoot pulled away. With a big lick that seemed to cover Harry's entire face Padfoot returned to his earlier antics until Harry was once again laughing out loud and playing with him.
A long while later Harry was sitting beside the bed petting Padfoot. He found himself grinning thinking about Ginny and the gift she had given him. Deciding to write her he moved to his desk and took out some parchment and a quill.
Thank you. I don't know what else to say and whatever it is could never be enough so thank you. You're right by the way I was surprised to find the gift. Yes, feel free to gloat the 'savior of young redheads' was surprised by none other than very one who won him the title in the first place. At first I didn't know what to think when I opened the gift I wanted to laugh and cry at the same time. But as he started to move and change I found the first true happiness I have felt since I lost Sirius so thank you again.
Thanks for your kind words as well. By the way, 'Anything' Ginny? That's kind of open ended wouldn't you say? That's a dangerous thing to say to the son, godson and friend of the marauders don't you think? Picture me with an evil grin right now. In all seriousness thank you that really means a lot to me.
I consider you one of my very best friends also and plan on writing to you lots this summer that is if you want me too anyway. I know on the train you said you're going out with Dean now so I'll understand and it's ok if you don't want me to.
Thanks again for the wonderful gift and I hope to hear from you soon,
As he finished the letter he found Padfoot looking over his shoulder. Reaching forward with his paw he knocked over the inkwell then stepped back from the desk. The look of concentration he had worn earlier once again appeared on his face. As Harry watched the dog shrunk to its original size and began barking at Harry.
Picking up the dog Harry set him on his desk and watched as he walked through the spilled ink then onto the bottom of the letter Harry had just written Ginny leaving a trail of tiny dog paw prints across the paper just below his signature.
Laughing Harry picked up the quill and scribbled a quick note on the bottom of the letter before placing it in an envelope to send to Ginny.
After cleaning the ink from the desk and Padfoot's feet he placed the small dog back on the floor where he quickly returned to his larger size. Harry absently noted that the transformation was much quicker this time and didn't seem to require as much concentration by Padfoot. Shrugging internally to himself he returned to playing with his new friend while waiting for Hedwig's return so he could send Ginny his thank you.
Ginny was bored. She had arrived home from her fourth year at Hogwarts earlier in the afternoon and already she could find nothing to do but her homework which she was loath to start this early in the summer and daydream about a certain raven haired green eyed Gryffindor.
She found herself sitting at her desk in her room alternating between her daydreams of Harry and berating herself for falling back into her old habit of pining for The Boy Who Lived. Ginny had dated other guys in an effort to get over her crush and while she had grown and become more confident all that had really happened was that she discovered other guys were not Harry. She became good friends with Harry over the last year and was very proud of the fact that she could now talk to him without blushing like the little girl she used to be. The more she thought about him the more she came to realize the simple truth. Her crush was long gone. Ginny Weasley was in love with Harry Potter.
As thoughts of Harry continued to plague her mind she heard a tapping on her window and looked up to see Hedwig sitting on her window sill. Leaping from her seat she opened the window and Hedwig flew in. After removing the letter from her leg Ginny fetched a bowl of water and some owl treats before sitting down to read the letter.
She grinned practically bouncing in her seat as she read her letter from Harry. Her excitement briefly changed to confusion as he mentioned the statue she had given him moved and changed, she had no idea the statue was magical she only knew it looked like Sirius animagus form. She would have to ask him more about that.
Ginny laughed at the implications of his next paragraph knowing that she would in fact do 'anything' he wanted but that he was too much of a gentleman to ever take advantage of her in the way he was joking about, "Unfortunately." she muttered to herself. She was thrilled he considered her one of his best friends and noted she would have to let him know she wasn't really dating Dean in her return letter.
She sat up straighter and gasped out loud as she noticed the tiny dog tracks going across the letter and the hastily scribbled note Harry had obviously added after the fact.
Padfoot says hi!
Reading the letter several more times she quickly grabbed a quill and wrote a reply.
Thanks for your letter and I would love to write to you this summer. By the way I'm not really dating anyone right now. I only made the comment about Dean to mess with Ron. He still seems to think I'm 6 years old or something. It's actually funny you'd never know they were ever friends the way he whined about Dean the whole way home until mum finally told him it was none of his business and to keep his nose out of it. I should probably tell him the truth but not yet, I think I'll let him stew for awhile!
I'm glad you like your gift. I was surprised to hear it moves. It never moved when I saw it in the shop and the owner didn't say anything about it. What does it do and what did you mean when you mentioned it changing? I'll also say I was shocked when I saw your note at the bottom, the little dog tracks are cute though!
As far as your comments about 'anything', Marauders don't scare me so I'll just let your imagination run wild for now. Evil grin back at you!
There's not much else going on right now so I guess I'll end my note here. Write soon OK? I have a feeling your letters are about the only thing I'll have to look forward too this summer.
I laughed for the longest time when I read what you wrote about Ron and Dean. I can hear Ron going on about him in my mind and the things he's saying are hilarious! Don't worry about Ron to much. You're definitely not a 6 year old girl anymore. I would have thought he would understand that after the ministry thing, just know that I'm on your side in this one. We should really try to get him and Hermione together. We know they both like each other and maybe if they were dating Ron would back off of you and they would spare Gryffindor tower all the fighting this year. Probably not but I can dream!
You asked about the statue, I was holding it in my hand when it sort of woke up. After a few minutes he jumped from my hand onto the floor and started growing bigger. It only took a few seconds but it looks and acts just like Sirius did when he was in his dog form. I was trying to figure out a name for him when I noticed a collar, well more of a necklace really, with a charm that says 'Padfoot' on it. Weird huh? I assumed at the time you knew about all that. I wonder now if it's something Sirius made. I don't know Gin maybe you can help me figure out this mystery but one thing I do know is that it's definitely the best present I've ever received. Thanks again.
I'm shocked at you Ginny Weasley you should be very frightened of Marauders! I guess growing up with the twins has hardened you against pranksters. My imagination is running wild right now and evil grins will get you everywhere.
As you can probably guess I'm bored too as there's never anything going on here. Write soon Gin.
Thanks for agreeing with me on the Ron issue. I over heard him muttering something about Dean and wheezes under his breath earlier and am a bit worried that he might be planning to do something to Dean. I'd hate to see him get pranked as he's innocent, then again it might be fun to let it go to its conclusion and see what happens. Picture me smirking right now.
I definitely agree on getting Ron and Hermione together though I wouldn't get your hopes up that it will stop them from arguing. Do you have any ideas on how we might go about this?
I'll be glad to try and help you figure out the mystery of the statue. I agree with your guess that Sirius might have made it. Too many things coincide with his animagus form for it to be coincidence not to mention his name on the necklace. Maybe when we get back to school we can go to the store in Hogsmede and ask the owner if he knows anymore about it.
Yes I suppose growing up with the twins will do that to you. You should know not every prank the twins have been given credit for were pulled by them. Grin. I'm glad you're using your imagination Harry. I can't wait to find out what you come up with! Another evil grin since you said they'll get me everywhere!
Mum's calling for dinner so I'll let you go for now. Write soon.
How are you? I hope your relatives aren't treating you badly for a change. I'm getting ready to leave for a vacation in Australia with my parents soon so will not be able to write to you this summer.
I hope you're dealing with your loss and not keeping your feelings bottled up like I know you do. It was not your fault Harry! I'm sorry I won't be around to talk this summer but you should talk to someone. How about Remus? I'd say Ron but I'm not so sure he'd be a very good person to talk to about something like that. He does tend to be less than tactful at times.
Please take care of yourself Harry and I look forward to seeing you when I get back.
Hope the muggles are treating you ok. What are we going to do about Dean mate? Can you believe he's dating Ginny? Doesn't he know she's too young? Mum told me to leave it alone but I have to protect Ginny. What do you think I should do? Should I write him a letter explaining how things are or maybe go over to his house and straighten him out? Let me know. Looks like Hermione is going to Australia. At least she's not going to Bulgaria to see that wanker Krum. She really needs to stay away from that guy I don't trust him. Well write back soon and let me know ok.
Don't worry, the muggles are fine. As far as Ginny is concerned I wouldn't worry about it. She's grown up and can make her own decisions as well as take care of herself. I'd take your mum's advice and stay out of it. You're only going to make Ginny mad if you press it and you know you'll pay if you do that.
What happened to Krum being your hero? I don't think Hermione likes him as more than a friend anyway. As far as I know she hasn't even heard from him in almost a year.
Tell everyone I said hi,
Ron wrote me about Dean. You're right he seems a little upset about it. I told him you were grown up and could make your own decisions. A bit over protective isn't he? As funny as it might be to see him prank Dean you probably should tell Ron before that happens but I'll back you either way.
Hermione wrote me also, her letters in the trash right now. Same old Hermione assuming she knows how I feel and trying to force me to talk about it. Luckily she's leaving for Australia for most of the summer so I don't have to deal with it. Ron mentioned Hermione in his letter saying he was glad she wasn't going to Bulgaria to see Krum. I told him they hadn't even written each other in a year as far as I know. I wish he'd get over that. I don't have any ideas right now but I'm sure between the two of us we can come up with something good to help them get together.
That's a good idea about going to Hogsmede to try to find answers we'll have to do that. That is of course if you would consent to being seen in Hogsmede with me. Please? I'll buy you a butter beer. By the way sorry about the slobber on this letter, Padfoot decided he wanted to play while I was writing this. While I'm thinking about it would you mind keeping Padfoot between you and me for now? I'm not sure I'm ready to tell anyone about him yet. Thanks Gin.
So the twins are leaving a legacy behind in the form of Ginny Weasley. Who would guess? Should you require or desire an accomplice in the future I would be more than happy to assist you.
My imagination is my own and for now will stay that way. You will have to use your own imagination to imagine what I am imagining when I think of 'anything'. I'm not sure if that even makes sense but if you can figure it out imagine me grinning at you.
Thank you for writing me this summer I find myself looking forward to each of your letters.
Well I broke down and told Ron the truth about Dean. He wasn't very happy to find out I'd lied about it but I could tell he was really relieved. O' well, it was fun while it lasted. At least now maybe he'll get off my back about it.
I know Hermione can be a bit overbearing and pushy sometimes but don't forget that's just her way and she only does it because she cares about you. That said I would have thrown her letter away too. Don't worry too much about a plan for Ron and Hermione we'll think of something when we see each other again.
Have I told you how much I love Hedwig? Ron saw her coming with your last letter and threw a fit when she landed on my shoulder and gave me the letter. He insisted it had to be a mistake and tried to take it from me. Hedwig seemed pretty upset with his comments and nearly pecked him to death until he finally ran from the room. I haven't laughed so hard in a long time!
I would love to go to Hogsmede with you and you don't have to buy me a butter beer though I would appreciate one.
I would also gladly accept you as my partner in crime. Perhaps we could start our own chapter of the Marauders. The twins have come up with some simply ingenious new pranks that I'm sure they would gladly donate to our cause. We should talk to Moony. I bet he would also help.
I was able to figure out what you meant and I can only hope my imagination is imagining what your imagination imagined. If this is the case imagine me grinning happily.
Thank you for writing me as well, it's been the best part of my summer.
PS. I found the slobber quite amusing. Don't worry I won't tell anyone about him. Give Padfoot a hug for me.
The last will and testament of Mr. Sirius Black has recently been released and may now be executed. You are listed as the primary beneficiary along with a Mr. Remus Lupin. Please come to Gringotts in Diagon Alley at your earliest convenience to accept your inheritance at his bequest.
Sr. Solicitor Garnod
Gringotts, London Branch
It has just come to my attention that against my wishes Gringotts has contacted you about the will of Sirius Black. I am sorry but at this time you will be unable to go to Diagon Alley for a reading. It is simply not worth the risk.
I also ask that you refrain from leaving your relatives house. For the wards to protect you to their fullest extent you need to be inside. I know you like to spend time in the park down the street but I must insist that you discontinue this practice and remain in doors.
Unfortunately you will also be unable to leave Privet Drive before the end of the summer. I will arrange for someone from the Order to obtain your school supplies before term starts and arrange for a guard to pick you up and deliver you to the Hogwarts Express at Kings Cross Station on September 1st.
Headmaster, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
Harry became enraged as he read the letter from Dumbledore. It seemed the old man hadn't learned anything from the previous year and was planning to continue keeping him in the dark. Harry was sick of people controlling his life without even giving him the simple courtesy of telling him what's going on. This was exactly the type of behavior that led to the death of his godfather. He had no doubt's that Dumbledore had reasons for all the demands in his letter and he also knew that the reasons were not given because Harry would not like and probably disagree with them. Here it was only a week into the summer and already he was being told what he could and couldn't do while being locked away in his prison at his relative's house.
He'd had enough. Dumbledore had finally pushed him too far and he wasn't going to put up with it any longer. Petting the dog sitting faithfully beside him he began to formulate a plan.
"I think it's time to start making my own decisions Padfoot. What do you think?"
Padfoot barked loudly seemingly in approval.
With Padfoot's reassurance Harry picked up his quill and began a letter to the one person he was sure would be willing to help him.
I'm sorry for the tone of this letter but I've just received a letter from Gringotts about Sirius will and another from Dumbledore which has me really angry. He just doesn't seem to get it and I see him making the same mistakes he made last year. We both know how that turned out.
I know we've had fun with it but in all seriousness Gin, I need to know if you truly meant what you said in your first letter. Would you really do anything to help me? I hate to ask but I'm going to make some changes in my life and I'd rather not do it alone. It's ok if you can't help me, I'll understand and it won't change anything.
Of course I meant it and of course I'll help you. What do you need?
The first thing I need to do is go to Diagon Alley and Gringotts. Is there any way you could sneak out in the next few days and meet me there?
Any day is fine Harry. Ron is working at the twins shop and mum is always gone on Order business so I'm alone almost every day. Where do you want to meet?
There's a muggle diner in London a few doors down from the Leaky Cauldron, can you meet me there at nine tomorrow morning? Assuming you floo to the Leaky Cauldron, try not to let anyone see you there and be sure to bring your wand. Thanks for this and for everything this summer Gin. You're the best. I can't wait to see you tomorrow.
I'll be there. I can't wait to see you too.