Hey guys!!! This is the last chapter of In the Way! I hope you have enjoyed the ride as much as I have. I have to thank Nita for betaing for me for this entire story! She's been such a help to me!! And I'd like to also take the time to thank all of my faithful reviewers! I really appreciate all that you have done and said to encourage me through this story!! This is by far my longest chapter yet!! 11,000 words (so I hope you have lots of time on your hands!)!!! I hope you enjoy this last and very long chapter of In the Way!!
A/N I have worked really hard on betaing this chapter for you guys because my beta's computer is broken and she can't get to me…so I hope that this is as error free as possible and when Nita gets her computer up and running, I shall post again when she gets it back to me. So, ENJOY!!!!
Harry woke up as he heard groaning coming from the sitting room. Harry smiled and got up and very quietly made his way to the door and peeked out. I don't want to miss this.
Sirius and Remus were tangled up in each other and when they were conscious enough to realize where they were, they looked at each other, gasped, and quickly detangled themselves and stood up. Looking at anything except each other.
Harry laughed and walked out.
"Hey, guys!" Harry said joyfully, turning the lights on.
Instead of returning the greeting, both men's hands flew to their heads and groaned.
"Stop yelling, Harry, we can't take it! And turn out those lights!" Sirius whispered.
Harry bit his lip in his attempt not to smile, but did as the man asked. "What happened?" he asked innocently.
"Firewhiskey," was the only response he got out of Sirius, who sighed in relief that the lights were once again off.
"Oh, I'm so sorry, I would have spoke softer if I knew you had a touch of a hangover, Sirius," Harry retorted in shock concern.
"Harry," Remus spoke up for the first time. "We may have a MASSIVE hangover, but we aren't stupid, we can hear the sarcasm in your voice."
"Sarcasm?" Sirius asked, looking confused.
"Yes, Sirius, sarcasm. It's a remark that means the exact opposite of what it seems and is intended to mock," Harry answered, using copious amounts of the word he had defined.
"No one can do sarcasm as well as me."
Harry turned to see a pained look on the Potions Master's face. Harry again tried not to smile.
"Well, I try, sir."
Snape smirked as well as he could with his face in the pained expression. "I vaguely remember you coming out last night after we were completely smashed," Snape told the young man.
Harry smiled. "Yes, well you were all making such a racket that I couldn't help but come out to see what all the commotion was about."
Snape closed his eyes, as if he wanted to erase the night from his mind. "How did I get to my bed?" he asked.
Harry faltered just a moment too long and Snape gave Harry a knowing look. "Well, you see-"
"Harry, you didn't have anything to do with us on the couch did you?" Remus asked.
Harry chuckled guiltily. Then at the angry glares he was getting from all three men he quickly said, "What did you expect me to do? Let you all sit around all night and make complete fools of yourselves? Besides, you could have passed out on the floor. Better I stun you and you wind up on a soft surface."
Sirius looked convinced but Remus and Snape were piecing together what Harry said.
"YOU WHAT?!" Snape and Remus yelled together. Both regretted it as soon as the exclamation left their mouth. They grasped their heads and groaned in pain.
"Heh, I'm glad you guys have such big hangovers, or else I'd be dead right now."
"You bet your arse you would. And don't think you won't regret it…" Snape paused. "After we can run straight without pealing our heads off our necks."
"You'd better wipe that smile off your face young man," Remus warned Harry, speaking in low tones.
Harry knew two way to get out of this situation, but he decided that he wanted to make it to seventeen and decided on the safer option to just run away and let the men get over their hangovers.
He quickly dodged Remus and made his way to the door. Sirius wasn't a problem, he was sleeping on the couch again. Snape was too far away to do anything, so Harry made his way clearly to the portrait door and ducked out, but before he ran from the portrait door, he turned back to see Snape running into one of the armchairs and Remus picking himself up off the floor.
Harry laughed himself down the hall and all the way up to the common room. Every time he would calm down he would see Remus and Sirius on the couch and Snape running into the armchair and he would dissolve into laughter again. He thought it was a miracle that he made it to the Gryffindor Common Room, albeit he was howling with laughter, but he still made it. He looked at the fat lady and before he could try to jumble the password out, she flew open to reveal a shocked Ginny Weasley.
Harry calmed down enough to quickly tell the tale of the previous night and that morning. Harry thought vaguely that he still didn't know what time it was, but he continued on with his story, laughing every little while. Even before he finished he had Ginny in stitches, but he quickly finished his story and they had to lean on each other for support so they wouldn't fall down.
Ron and Hermione came out, wondering what the hold up was and why they were still laughing. They rolled their eyes at each other and drug the two laughing teens inside and onto the couch.
Harry and Ginny finally settled down. Ron and Hermione both looked back and forth between the two who were smiling and still looking at each other. Harry felt a jolt in his stomach as he stared into Ginny's eyes. He wondered what it was but decided to worry about it later and he decided to tell Ron and Hermione the story.
When Harry told them of how he found Snape, Sirius, and Remus drunk as skunks, Ron started to laugh.
"They were drunk? Blimey, Harry, who ever thought of Snape getting drunk," he exclaimed.
Harry shook his head and continued with the story. Harry chuckled as the other three were in hysterics by the time he had finished.
Finally the others calmed down and they exchanged smiles.
"Imagine if you showed that memory to the entire school, Harry," Hermione suggested.
Harry laughed. "Yeah, but I'm already going to be dead, if I showed that to anyone at school Snape would kill me and bring me back just to kill me again."
"Why are you going to be dead?" Ron asked.
"Well, do you think he's happy that I stunned him and levitated him to bed? Let alone the fact that I saw him drinking and laughing with his two 'arch enemies'?" he asked.
Ron's mouth widened in recognition. "Oh. Yeah."
Everyone shook their heads and smiled. "Ron, sometimes I wonder," Hermione said, giving her boyfriend a poke in the shoulder.
"Have you guys had breakfast yet?" Harry asked.
"No, we were getting ready to go when you made your presence known outside," Hermione responded with a look. "And if we don't go now we'll have to wait until lunch."
"Oh," Harry laughed. "Well, I guess we'd better go now, I haven't had anything yet either. And running for your life works up quite an appetite."
They laughed together as they made their way out of the Gryffindor Common Room and toward the Great Hall.
Walking down the stairs, the door to the Great Hall in view, Harry stopped for a moment. He debated quickly and then continued walking. He ignored the looks of his three friends and when they got to the door he motioned them back. He cracked open the door and peeked inside. He sighed when he found that Snape was no where in sight. He opened the door fully and was about to walk in when he felt a tap on his shoulder. He turned around, mid smile, and froze. Snape was smirking behind him, one eyebrow raised.
Harry laughed nervously and then walked quickly through the doors and sat down at the Gryffindor table. Within seconds, the other three were sitting with him. Ron to his right, and Ginny and Hermione in front of him. They were all smiling.
"What?" he asked.
The other three shook their heads and started filling their plates.
Harry filled his plate and looked up at the teacher's table and saw Snape sitting there eating his own food. Then he looked up and saw Harry smiling up at him. He gave Harry a small smile and went back to his breakfast.
Harry smiled wider, knowing everything was alright. He turned back to the table and started eating.
"Has anyone gotten there letters yet?" Hermione asked. "We should have gotten them ages ago."
Harry glanced at everyone and everyone shook their heads. "Maybe mum's got them?" Ginny suggested.
"Why haven't we gotten them yet? School's going to start in a week." Harry asked.
"Who knows," Ron put in his two cents as he loaded more sausage onto his plate.
Before he was finished eating he saw Ginny look over his shoulder momentarily and he knew that someone was behind him.
Harry smiled and turned around. "Yeah?" he asked.
"When you're done eating, we need to talk," Snape told him.
Harry nodded his head. "Alright, I'll be there soon."
Snape nodded in return and walked out of the Great Hall.
Harry quickly finished the food on his plate and said, "I'll see you guys later. Hopefully I won't be dead when you see me next, and then maybe we can do a bit of flying."
"Alright, have fun," Ginny told him.
Harry rolled his eyes. "Yeah, right."
He walked back through the doors of the Great Hall and made his way down the familiar path to the dungeons. He entered through the portrait and saw Snape sitting on the couch. Harry smiled at the memory of just the previous night, but stopped as Snape looked up.
"So, you wanted to talk?" he asked.
Snape nodded. "Yes, I wanted to let you know that you are welcome do come down here after school starts if you need to. I won't shut you out if you need to come down here for something or if you just want to get away from your dorm mates."
Harry smiled. "Thanks. What would I tell them though? If I decided to come down here?"
"Tell them to mind their own business," Snape suggested with a smirk.
"Alright, that works, I guess. What's going to happen next summer? Are we staying here again?" he asked.
Severus shook his head. "No, we will go to my manner next summer. What will probably happen, if you have no objections, is we will go over Christmas break so you can pick out your room and decorate it however you wish."
Harry stared at Snape with a shocked expression but then he smiled. "You mean I get my own room?"
A ghost of a smile passed across Severus' face as he said, "Yes, you get your own room."
Harry smiled broadly. But then he realized something and his smile faltered. "What's going to happen in class?"
Severus sighed. He had wondered when Harry was going to ask that question. "Well, I'm not sure what's going to happen. I have to talk to Albus, but I may not have to go back to the way I was last year. But then again, if the Death Eater's children have already been notified then there won't be any use to act as if I still hate you," he said with a smirk. Harry smiled, it was easier to laugh about the fact that he used to be hated by the man because, now, he didn't hate him at all. "But I will talk with Albus and see what he says, if he says that the children will know then I don't see why we can't change the way the class is run. Not much will change of course, but I will go easier on you."
Harry sighed with relief. That would make things a whole lot more enjoyable. Hey, he thought. I might even learn something in class now.
"But if they don't know, then I must keep up the act, you understand?"
Harry sighed in understanding. "Yeah, I know." Harry thought for a moment before asking, "Professor?"
"I've been wondering," he stopped, biting his lip.
"What is it? Come on spit it out."
Harry looked up at him. "How was it a surprise when mum told you that you were my dad? I mean-" he paused and smiled embarrassedly.
Severus shook his head. "Well, it wasn't what you think. Your mother and I had been friends all throughout school, and before. Except for the last few years when I got real deep in with the Death Eaters. But before that we had always been friends, doing potions together, 'hanging out' as you like to call it."
Harry smiled. He had a hard time imagining Snape and his mother spending time together.
"When your mother got together with your father," he stopped, looked at the floor for a moment, as if collecting his thoughts. He looked back up and began again. "Only a few months after Hogwarts your mother sent me an owl. She said that she wanted a child. But she said she had a problem; James couldn't have children. So she asked me to create a potion that would allow her to have a child."
Harry let what he said wash over him. He smiled. "Oh."
Severus rolled his eyes. "Get our mind out of the gutter."
Harry chucked. "Hey, what do you expect? You tell me that the man that my mum married wasn't my dad but that you were, what do you think my mind jumps to? Fields of wild flowers?"
Severus sighed. "Anyways. When I read that, I knew what she wanted. But instead of her having James' child, I made it so that she would have mine." He shook his head. "I wanted to have the ultimate revenge against James Potter for taking your mother away from me. So I sent her the potion and as far as I knew she took it. Then you were born. She told me afterward that it looked like she didn't need it. So I didn't even think that you were my son when she told me that. Then when you came to school, I knew you weren't because you looked so much like James, almost identical. Then when Lily sent me the missive, there was still that possibility, so I believed her. Now after everything that has happened, I see what she did and why she did it. I can't really blame her."
Harry watched Snape as he finished talking. His eyes seemed to glaze over slightly. Harry felt as if someone just punched him in his stomach as he realized: He loved her. That was in itself an awkward thought. Snape loving anyone was something Harry never thought he'd see. Then he felt stupid. Of course he loved her. He was trying to tell me that from the beginning!
"So, what was in that letter that she gave you? She asked me to ask you."
Severus looked curiously at Harry. He stood without a word and walked back to his room.
Harry was startled by his quick departure but knew he was going to get the letter.
He came back quickly and sat back down. He gave Harry a small smile as he took the letter out of his pocket. "I'll trade you."
Harry smiled and laughed. He realized that he still had the letters in his pocket, because he hadn't undressed the night before, so he carefully took them out and started to give it to Snape but hesitated. He decided to give it to him. If he doesn't like it, he needs to grow up.
He and Snape exchanged letters and Harry smiled as he saw the now familiar writing of his mother.
I know you're probably surprised to see my handwriting again, Sev, but it is necessary that I write to you. I have to tell you that I kept something from you. Remember when I said it looked like I didn't need the potion you made me? Well, I used it. Harry is your son, not James'. I didn't know how to tell you, I hope you'll forgive me for springing it on you like this and for not telling you before.
I'm sure you're wondering why I'm telling you this now and why I didn't send you this missive before. I had to put a charm on Harry to make him look like his father so as not to arouse suspicion and it will wear off when he turns sixteen. Not only will his looks change, but before I did the charm, he had perfect eye sight. So to make him look even more like James I put another charm on him to make him need glasses.
I'm sorry again, I hope that you can find it in your heart to forgive me. Please take care of Harry for me.
Harry smiled. Now that he knew the truth about what happened, he could truly appreciate the sly skill of his mother. Though one word jumped out at him throughout the entire letter.
Harry smiled evilly as he saw Snape's eyes widen in abject horror.
"Oh, this is too good! I can't wait to tell everyone the nickname that my mum gave you!" Harry laughed uncontrollably.
He controlled himself enough to look up and see Snape scanning the letter, as if looking for something. Apparently he didn't find it because he went back up to where he was and continued reading.
Harry continued to smile as Snape finished his letter. Harry saw understanding cross his face for a moment, but then it was gone.
When he looked up, Harry offered the letter back to him with a smile. He took it and gave Harry's letter back as well.
Harry smiled as Snape tucked the letter securely away from Harry in his robes. "Tell anyone and you die."
Harry smirked. "Oooo, well that changes everything. I guess I should tell everyone about it then."
Snape gave Harry a look that said, "You just try it."
Harry laughed. "Alright, just Ron, Hermione, and Ginny, how's that?" he compromised.
Snape sighed. He knew that Harry would tell those friends of his, but hopefully it wouldn't spread to the entire school. He knew he could trust Harry not to spill the beans to everyone in school, but he couldn't trust his friends. But there wasn't anything he could do, he couldn't make him not tell anyone, so he agreed. "Alright."
Harry felt brave after his teasing of Snape's name that he asked, "So, Professor, got a girlfriend?"
The glare that came his way made Harry want to stop sitting right next to the man and run halfway around the school. But Harry smiled slightly as he gave the professor a genuine curious look.
"My love life is none of your business," Snape said dangerously.
Or lack thereof, Harry thought mischievously.
Snape glared at Harry once again as he saw the smirk on Harry's face, as if he knew what the young man was thinking. "That too."
Harry glared slightly at the man. But then remembered something. "Sir? Could you ask Dumbledore if I should start Occlumency again?"
Severus blinked, shocked that he would ask such a question, but then he smiled internally. He knew what it meant for Harry to ask about practicing Occlumency again. The last time there had been no trust between the two of them and it hadn't worked out at all. He had done more harm than good. But now, there was a chance that Harry could learn to protect his mind properly this time.
But then he felt rather foolish; how did he know that Harry wanted to practice with him? He could be asking if Dumbledore could practice with him. But he would deal with that later.
"Of course," he replied to the question.
Harry smiled; then he realized something. "Oh, I still need to go to Diagon Ally to get school supplies. When are we going to get our letters?" he asked.
"Oh," Snape said, looking as if he just remembered something. He got up and looked around in the armchair that sat in front of him to his left and suddenly stood up clutching a letter. "I'm guessing that this is it."
"Oh, that's what the other letter was," Harry stated. "Can we go to Diagon Ally today to get the stuff we need?" he asked.
Severus nodded. "Of course, but I cannot take you."
Harry was confused for a moment but then realized that if he was seen with Harry and the others that it would be suspicious. Harry nodded in understanding. He looked down at the couch and smiled remembering the drunken excursions of the three men. He looked up and raised his eyebrow to the older man. "Why did you guys get drunk?" he asked bluntly.
Snape's face remained blank. Harry waited patiently as Snape was probably wondering whether or not to tell him. Harry wondered what had made the three men drink so much that they forgot almost everything that happened throughout the entire night.
Apparently he decided to tell him because he stated talking.
"Lupin and Black came here carrying you. They said they found you, outside of the room that Black was in, asleep. So they decided to bring you back. They took you to your room and put you to bed. They came back out and we had a small argument. We silenced your room so as not to wake you up. And what we were arguing about is none of your business," he said as Harry opened his mouth to ask. Harry closed his mouth and looked sheepishly at him.
"We finally stopped arguing and Lupin summoned a bottle of Firewhiskey. We had a few drinks and after that it's a bit fuzzy. I remember him trying to summon more bottles but it wouldn't work; I guess he was too drunk to get the incantation right, so he called that elf, Doddy?"
"Dobby?" Harry asked, smiling at the mispronunciation.
"Yes, Dobby. He called him and asked for some more. Then I remember you coming in and that's it."
Harry smiled. "Well, when I came out you were all laughing and carrying on like you didn't have a care in the world. Maybe you all can get along after all."
Harry laughed. "What? Do you have to be drunk to have fun?"
"You're pushing it, young man," he warned.
Harry stopped. "I'm sorry. It's just, you don't let yourself have fun. I think that was the first time I'd ever seen or heard you laugh."
"Well, there isn't much to laugh about," Snape told him.
Harry sighed. There is, you just don't want to see them. Must you need to keep punishing yourself for whatever you feel you need to punish yourself for? "Sure there is. Ever heard any jokes?" he asked.
"I have no sense of humor," Snape informed Harry.
Harry smiled. "Yeah, sure. Everyone has a sense of humor. Ok, let's see, I have to know a joke." He looked thoughtful for a moment. "How about I get back to you on that?" he asked with a smile.
"Sure," Snape said, rolling his eyes. "Why don't you go back to those friends of yours and get your plans figured out about getting your supplies. I'll see you this afternoon, I have to prepare some potions for Madam Pomfrey and then go to the Order meeting."
Harry nodded. "Alright. See you later."
Harry stood and walked out the door as Snape walked back to his potions lab.
Harry took out the Hogwarts letter and read it on his way for something to do. He found it rather boring to walk along the halls of the now well known path to Gryffindor Tower alone. Sixth years would be getting ready to take the N.E.W.T's next year, which the thought of it in itself is enough to make an unprepared seventh year want to jump off the astronomy tower. He looked down the list of classes that he had and he hoped it wouldn't be too horrible of a year. Defense Against the Dark Arts, Potions, Transfiguration, Charms, and Herbology; it was definitely going to be an interesting year. Wait. How did I get into potions? Snape wouldn't- he smiled as he realized. I've got to remember to thank him. Now I can still try to be an Auror.
He saw the list of things he needed to get and knew he had to go to Gringotts to get more money because he knew the amount in his trunk would not be enough.
He finally got to the portrait, said the password, and crawled in.
"Hey guys!" he greeted his friends.
"Mum just sent us our lists! Do you have yours?" he asked. When Harry showed him his letter he asked, "What classes do you have?"
"Defense Against the Dark Arts, Herbology, Charms, Transfiguration, and Potions," Harry told them.
The three Gryffindor's eyes widened. "Potions? But how-" Ron started but was cut off by Hermione.
"Of course! No wonder!"
"What? What? What did I miss?" Ron asked.
"Snape's Harry's dad! Of course he would have him in his class," Ginny informed her brother.
Harry smiled, but then realized what Ginny had said. He never told her that Snape wasn't his dad. He wondered if he should tell them, but decided that now was not the time.
"So, what classes do you guys have?" Harry asked.
"I've got the same subjects as you, mate!" Ron said excitedly looking at his list.
"Well I have Care of Magical Creatures, Muggle Studies, Potions, Transfiguration, Charms, Defense Against the Dark Arts, and History of Magic," Ginny informed everyone.
"And I have Potions, Charms, Defense Against the Dark Arts, Transfiguration, Herbology, Ancient Runes, and Arithmacy," Hermione read off her paper.
How she does it…Harry thought, shaking his head but had learned by now not to say anything. "So when do you guys want to go to Diagon Ally?" Harry asked.
"Mum said that she could take us this afternoon if she could ask more people to come as a guard," Ginny told them. "She told us to make sure to tell you that you were invited to come."
Harry smiled. "Thanks, I'll be happy to come."
Ron stood. "Well, we can complete this conversation in the Great Hall because it's time for lunch," he informed the group.
Everyone smiled, stood, and walked out the door and down to get some lunch.
"So when did your mum say that she would be coming?" Harry asked Ginny as they sat down at the table .
"She said she would come around two."
Harry nodded his head and started to eat. He would be able to spend the rest of the day with his friends because Snape was going to be busy. But what would they do? Harry thought as he ate, not realizing that there was a conversation going on beside him.
Harry looked up and saw his three friends gazing at him, concerned. "Sorry, what were you saying?"
"We were thinking of going to fly later," Ron told him.
Harry smiled. "Flying sounds good," he told them.
Watching his friends talk he realized he needed to tell them that Snape wasn't his dad after all. He wondered if now would be the best time; he didn't want to mislead his friends. He decided to tell them before they went flying.
While they were finishing up, Dumbledore came down the isle of the Gryffindor table and stopped at the four teens.
"Yes, professor?" Harry asked.
Dumbledore smiled. "Molly would like for me to tell you that she will be here at two o'clock sharp and asks that you be down in the Entrance Hall to go to Diagon Ally."
"Alright, we'll make sure to be down here," Ginny told the Headmaster.
Dumbledore nodded in acknowledgment and walked away from the four Gryffindors and out of the Hall.
"I don't know about anyone else, but I'm stuffed!" Ginny said, leaning back from the table.
Harry smiled. "Yeah, me too. I love Hogwarts food."
"Eah, me foo," Ron said gracefully around his full mouth of apple pie.
Everyone else rolled their eyes.
"Of course you love Hogwarts food, Ron. You love any kind of food!" Ginny said in reproach.
All Ron did was smile as he finished his last bite of pie. "Done."
Everyone laughed, and when Ron's ears turned red they laughed even harder.
"Oh, come on," Ron told them, standing up and walking out of the Great Hall.
After composing themselves they followed Ron back to the common room.
When they got to the portrait they went upstairs and quickly got their brooms and then met back in the common room.
"Everyone ready?" Ron asked, clearly ready to go.
"Hang on a sec, guys. I need to talk to you for a bit," Harry told them.
They gave him a confused look but when Harry motioned to the couch and armchairs they sat down without complaint.
"Snape told me something last night that he had known for only a few days. He had to make a potion for the Ministry, so that I could stay with him and not go back to the Dursleys," he explained.
Before he could continue Hermione asked, "Well, why are you not going back to the Dursleys? I thought you were safer there than anywhere else?"
Harry sighed. Images of what happened early in the summer came to his mind. He shook his head, he couldn't explain what his uncle had done. "Don't worry about it," he told them, as he continued with his story. "When he made it, he found that the potion didn't come out as he expected it to. It was suppose to be green, to show that I was his son. But when he went to bottle it; it was black." Harry let what he said sink in before he said.
"Snape's not my dad."
Hermione and Ron gasped, but Ginny's mouth hung open slightly and he saw the sadness and distress for him in her eyes. He appreciated that she knew what was going on inside him, and he gave her a small smile.
"So, who is your dad?" Hermione asked.
"My dad is who he was from the beginning: James Potter." He then told them of how his mother had asked Snape to make the potion for her, how Snape made it so that she would have his son, about the missives from his mother telling Snape that he was the father of Harry, the potion telling him that he was not Snape's son.
Ron stopped him and asked how, if Snape wasn't his father, he still had custody of him.
Harry shook his head. "I don't know, I never asked. But I think he did something to the potion to make it look like he was my dad. But it was definitely illegal, so I think it had better just be kept a secret, but if he tells me and I can tell you I will."
After they nodded in acquiesce, he continued. When he got to the part about when Voldemort found out, he wondered whether he should tell Ron and Hermione what he told Ginny. Taking a quick glance at her he saw a question in her eyes. She then looked at Ron and Hermione. He understood: she was wondering if he was going to tell them. He looked from them to her and tilted his head, asking what he should do. She then nodded slightly.
Harry sighed. He told about the pendant that Snape gave him for his birthday, about what it did. He stopped Hermione before she could talk. "Please, don't interrupt," he asked them. "I was in the Hospital Wing with Sirius when I realized that Snape had gone off grounds. I wanted to make sure that he wasn't in his rooms or office before going to Dumbledore. So I left, after telling Sirius that Snape was my dad." At the raised eyebrows of his two friends he nodded. "Yeah, it wasn't pretty. But I left and searched our quarters and then his office. He then woke up from whatever spell he was put under and he said something about pretending to be asleep. I questioned him and he said that he was with the Death Eaters. He had to go and after he did I ran to tell Dumbledore. I told him all I knew and was told not to worry. When I told Remus he said that if I didn't go to sleep he'd come pour sleeping potion down my throat. So when I went to the kitchens, after you all saw me, I knew I had to come up with a plan to get Snape out of there. So when I got to the kitchens and was talking with Dobby, I knew he could help me." He stopped at the looks he was getting from Ron and Hermione. "I was the only one who could go in and get him without Voldemort deciding to kill him. I had to go. So we came up with a plan and stuck to it. Dumbledore found out before I could leave and I left with Dobby; we ran across the grounds and, I guess we apparated to the place he was at. We had a small hitch in our plan, but after that it was smooth sailing. Dobby came into the cell we were in, unlocked the door, and let us out. We made it to the place where our portkeys would work and came home."
The glares he was getting from Ron and Hermione were understandable. He hadn't told them and left without saying anything. He 'played the hero' once again.
"We got back. We're safe now, and if I had waited much longer Death Eaters and Voldemort would have filled that little shack and he would have been dead." Ron and Hermione's glares went to shocked expressions. "Yeah, so aren't you glad I went when I did? If we had waited for Dumbledore to gather troops and try to get in there, Snape would have been dead." Harry stopped, thinking for the first time what it meant that he got there when he did. An evil thought came to his mind, I would have never seen him drunk. He shook his head, it was more than that. He would have lost one of the only father figures he'd ever had.
"Harry, you still could have told us-" Hermione tried.
"No. If I had told you, you would have either told Dumbledore and kept me here or come with me. I had already put you guys in danger once this year and I wasn't going to do it again. If you had come, it could have ruined the whole plan and you would have been captured by Death Eaters and I wouldn't have wanted that for you guys. I'm sorry I couldn't tell you, but I didn't want you guys worrying anyways," he told them.
"But what if you hadn't come back?" Ron asked.
He sighed. "I don't know. But I knew I was his only chance! I had to go get him. He told me a few hours ago that in a few hours Voldemort himself would have been there! I couldn't allow that to happen if I had the opportunity to do something about it."
Hermione was about to say something when Ginny stopped her before she could say anything. "It's done, Hermione. There's nothing we can do or say that will change the situation. Harry's here and he's safe, and unless we put some sort of tracking spell on him, he's going to do this again if someone else is captured." She gave Harry a look. "No matter how much we might want him to not go."
Harry smiled at her. He felt a rush of gratitude toward Ginny and another flutter in his stomach, but again brushed it aside.
Ginny smiled back, as if knowing his gratitude.
Hermione and Ron shared a look but stopped badgering Harry.
Harry looked at the clock; it was already one thirty. Had they really talked that long? Now seemed like a good time to go. "How about we go down and meet Mrs. Weasley?"
Ginny agreed and stood. Ron and Hermione stood as well, though not as enthusiastically. Harry knew that they needed time to realize what happened and to accept it. He was willing to take their anger.
The walk down to the Entrance Hall was the quietest and longest that Harry could ever remember them having. They made it down to the Entrance Hall to see Mrs. Weasley entering. She's early, he thought.
"Hi, Mrs. Weasley," Harry greeted her.
"Hello, Harry dear. How are you?" She asked, giving him a hug.
"I'm alright, not ready for summer to be over though," he told her. The other three nodded in agreement.
"Well, you'll all have fun this year and summer will be here again before you know it."
The four friends exchanged glances.
"Well, let us go, Remus and Tonks are awaiting us outside."
They all shared a look but quickly looked away, the urge to laugh was too strong. But when they walked out and saw Remus with Tonks they couldn't held it in any longer and laughter filled the grounds.
The teens were all too preoccupied to see the look of horror and shock that crossed Remus' face. When they finally controlled themselves they saw Tonks give Remus a confused look and him shake his head. "I'll explain later," he told her, wincing.
Harry and his friends chuckled as they all walked toward the gate to portkey over to Diagon Ally. When they reached the gate, Remus took out a broken glass and told everyone to grab hold. "Three, two, one," he counted down, and after 'one' Harry felt the now familiar pull of the portkey.
After picking himself up off the floor, Harry stood to see the wall where they would go to walk into Diagon Ally and he looked behind him to see the door to the Leaky Cauldron.
Before Remus tapped the bricks he said quickly, "I want all of us to stay together, no one is to go anywhere without either Tonks, Mrs. Weasley, or myself. Understood?"
The Gryffindors agreed and Remus nodded in approval. He turned around and tapped the bricks. He turned to Harry as the wall was opening. "Keep your head down as much as possible."
Harry nodded in understanding. They didn't want to cause a scene.
"Where are we going first?" Ron asked.
"Gringotts," Tonks responded.
The four teens and three adults walked down the street talking amongst themselves. The group tried to block Harry from view as much as possible and to everyone's relief they made it to the bank without incident.
Before they knew it they were making their way down the dark and damp corridors toward the vaults. Except for the fact that the wind made Harry's eyes sting, he always enjoyed the ride. He looked over to see Ginny and Hermione smiling too, but Ron looked slightly green with his eyes closed.
They stopped at Harry's vault first. As Harry was gathering his gold he had an idea. He took his money sack and filled it to the brim with Galleons and then stuffed his pockets with the gold he would need for his supplies. He stood back and went back into the cart. When they stopped at the Weasley's vault Harry stopped the goblin and gave him his money bag and whispered, "Could you put that in there when she's not looking?"
The goblin looked at him, calculating, then nodded and took the bag. Harry watched as Mrs. Weasley took the rest of the gold out of her vault and he smiled when she turned around and the goblin discreetly put his bag into the previously empty vault. As they rushed back up the tunnel Harry smiled as he thought of Mrs. Weasley's reaction when she saw the bag full of gold.
The group left the bank and headed to Flourish and Blotts to get their books. The three teens and adults again tried to shield Harry from view as he kept his head down as much as possible. They entered the bookstore to find some of their fellow classmates buying their books as well. They said a quick hello to Dean Thomas, Hannah Abbot, and Neville Longbottom before heading off to grab their own books.
When Harry got to the register the young woman did a double take and smiled at him before ringing him up. Harry sighed in relief as he took the books back from her with a smile that she didn't cause a big scene. Harry waited with Remus as the others bought their books and when they were finished they left to collect the rest of their supplies.
They walked to the Apothecary for their Potions supplies and then to Madam Malkin's to get some new robes for Harry and Ron, because they had grown out of their old ones, and some new dress robes for Hermione. Harry quickly stopped in one of the shops to buy a new watch, as he needed a new one desperately. They had finished their shopping with, thankfully, very little confrontation and made their way back toward the entrance to the Leaky Cauldron.
But before they could reach the wall they heard a women yell, "Alex!"
The group turned around to see a young boy with brown hair running toward Harry. Harry smiled at the young child who looked up at him and asked, "Are you Harry Potter?"
Harry smiled at the child and kneeled down to be at the child's eye level. "Yes, I am, what's your name?" he asked politely.
The little boy smiled. "I'm Alex and I'm four!"
Harry laughed. "Well, it's very nice to meet you, Alex. Where's your mummy?" he asked.
The little boy turned around and the group smiled as they saw him point to a woman in black robes with red hair running toward them with a little girl in tow. Harry stood back up as the woman the mother reached them.
"Oh my, I'm so very sorry about that," she apologized. She turned to her young son. "Alexander I am very disappointed in you! You should know better than to run away from mummy while she's shopping!" she scolded him.
Alex's eyes filled with tears. "I just wanted to say hi," he whispered.
The woman sighed and picked up her son. "You should not have run away from me like that. We'll be having a talking to when we get home, young man." She then turned to the group. "I'm very sorry, he has a tendency to run up to people while I'm shopping. I hope he didn't cause you all any trouble."
"No trouble, ma'am. It was nice meeting Alex," Harry said, smiling at the toddler. Then the other child caught Harry's eyes and she smiled at him. "Hello," he greeted the girl.
"Hi," she said, shyly.
The woman smiled back. "Well, thank you for your kindness. Well, we must be going now, thank you. Come along, Laurie, we must finish our shopping," she called to the girl, turning around and taking her hand.
"Bye, Mr. Potter!" the little boy yelled back as Laurie waved.
Harry smiled and waved at the two children. "Bye, Alex."
He turned back around and gave his friends a questioning look. "What?"
They shook their heads and walked back toward the wall leading to the Leaky Cauldron. Harry saw Hermione and Ginny share a smile before turning back to Remus who opened the wall so they could portkey back to Hogwarts. After the wall closed Remus took out the glass once again and they all shifted their bags as they took hold as he counted down from three.
Harry sighed as Remus said, "One." And he thought as he was pulled along, I hate portkeys.
They landed outside of the Hogwarts gate and Harry had to reach out for something to hold onto as he fell backward. Ginny quickly caught him and pulled him back upward.
Harry smiled sheepishly. "Thanks."
Ginny nodded. "No problem."
When they entered the Entrance Hall, Harry parted from the rest of the group and headed down to the Dungeons saying, "I'll see you guys at dinner." Remus and Mrs. Weasley went into the Great Hall while Ron, Hermione, and Ginny went up to the Gryffindor Tower.
Harry walked back to his home and realized that he probably should take his stuff up to the dorm soon. He made his way down the now familiar path to the portrait, said the password and walked inside.
He was slightly shocked to see Snape reclining in one of the armchairs in the living room.
He looked up as Harry put his stuff down at the end of the couch. "What are you doing here? I thought you'd be busy all day?" he asked.
"Well, I finished with Madam Pomfrey's potions and was waiting for the Order meeting to start before dinner," he replied.
"Oh, ok," he replied. "So it's going to be a short meeting then?" he asked.
"Apparently. Dumbledore said it would be very quick, which reminds me," he said, standing. "Now that you're back, that means the meeting will be starting soon. I shall see you at dinner," he told the teen. "Take the bags to your room."
"Alright," he replied, picking up the bags and walked back as Snape went to the Great Hall for his meeting.
Harry walked back to his room and stopped at the door and smiled. He had his own room whenever he wanted. Not to mention a room at Snape's house next summer. He felt a jolt of excitement when he thought about his new home. He walked through the door, walked over to his bed, and pulled the trunk over to it and put all his new school supplies inside.
Harry looked at his watch and saw that he had enough time to take a quick nap before heading to dinner. So he took his shoes off, flopped down on the bed, and fell asleep within minutes.
Harry woke up refreshed. He got up off the bed and slipped his shoes on and looked at his new watch. Oops, I'm late for dinner.
He quickly left his room and walked to the Great Hall at a quick pace. He got out of the dungeons and into the Entrance Hall fairly quickly. He felt his stomach start to rumble as he opened the door to the Great Hall. Everyone looked up as he walked in and he smiled sheepishly as he walked over to the Gryffindor table.
"What kept you, mate?" Ron asked.
"That much is obvious, Ron," Ginny told him.
Harry gave her a confused look.
Ginny smiled and gave Hermione a look and she took out her wand and conjured a mirror and gave it to Ginny who held it up for Harry to see.
Harry's eyes went wide and his hands jumped to his hair and straightened his wild hair. He turned a shade of red as he sat down, making sure his hair wasn't sticking up as bad as it had been.
The teens all laughed at Harry's embarrassment. "Oh, come on guys, leave it alone," he told them.
They stopped laughing and Ginny said, "But you looked so funny all red like that."
Harry started to fill his plate and felt someone looking at him. He looked at his friends and saw that they were all busy eating so he looked up to the head table and saw Snape looking at him. Harry gave him a questioning look and Snape shook his head, smirked, and went back to eating.
Harry was confused, but decided to ask him about it later. "So, what have you guys been talking about?" he asked.
"Well, apparently at the Order meeting Remus suggested that we be allowed to ride the train, even though we're already here," Ginny told him. "Dumbledore asked us and told us to think about it and if we wanted to we could take a portkey over and then take the train with everyone else back here."
Harry smiled. "That sounds like a great idea. I don't like missing the train," he said, sharing a look with Ron, who smiled. "Bad things happen when we miss the train, right Ron?" he asked.
Ron nodded his head, his mouth full of food.
The girls laughed at the memory of Harry and Ron's adventure with the Weasley's family car.
"So, it's settled? We'll go on the train?" Hermione asked. At everyone's approval she smiled. "That's good, because I don't want to miss the train either and besides Ron and I are still prefects and we should probably be on the train for the meeting."
They made small talk for the rest of the evening meal and soon the Gryffindors were full and tired.
"Well, I tell you what, I'm voting an early night!" Ginny exclaimed, yawning for good measure.
They got up and walked toward the Great Hall, laughing as Ron tripped over the bench trying to stand up.
It took until they reached the Entrance Hall for Ron's ears to return to their normal pale coloration.
"Well, I guess I'll see you guys tomorrow," Harry said, parting with his friends.
"Yeah, and we'll do that flying that we missed out on today!" Ron told him.
Harry smiled. "Sounds great! G'night!"
"Night, Harry," his friends called back to him.
Harry smiled and turned around to walk down the dungeons when he saw Snape coming out of the Great Hall as well.
Harry waited for the man and they walked down the dungeon corridors side by side.
"So, what was that look for?" Harry asked.
"Well, you remember our conversation about you being like your father, I said that you inherited several things from him."
Harry nodded, remembering the man saying so.
"Well, that was something you didn't inherit." And at Harry's questioning gaze he continued. "He liked to have his hair messed up, if you remember."
Harry suddenly was thrown back into Snape's memory of when his father had messed up his hair to try and impress his mother.
The guilt Harry was feeling must have shown on his face because Snape said, "Don't worry about it."
Harry looked up and saw the understanding in Snape's eyes and he smiled. "I'm really sorry about that," Harry told him anyways.
Snape nodded and continued walking.
They got to the portrait and after Snape said the password, they walked inside.
"Sit down, Harry," Snape instructed the young man.
Harry sat, hoping that he was not in trouble.
"I asked Professor Dumbledore whether or not the Death Eater's children would know of my treachery to the Dark Lord. Dumbledore said that they would because their parents would have been told to have the children try to get to me sometime during school. He doesn't like spies, for obvious reasons, and uses them to make examples of. If one gets away with spying on him, he feels that others would get the idea that they would not be punished. "
A few students shot into the forefront of Harry's mind that might try something like that. "Like Malfoy, Parkinson, Nott, Crabbe, and Goyle, right?" he asked, concerned.
Snape nodded sadly. "Yes, like them. Their parents will more than likely give them instructions to find a way to get me out of school and to the Dark Lord."
"So you need to be extra careful."
Snape nodded and sighed. "Yes. But you do as well."
Harry looked at him, confused and asked, "Why? I mean, I know I always have to be careful, but-"
"You helped me escape from the Dark Lord, Harry," Snape reminded him. "He's not going to kiss you for that. And to add onto that, you came into his territory, uninvited, rescued a traitor, and then slipped through his hands without even being tortured by his Death EatersHe's going to want you even more now and will probably try and…" Snape stopped, as if lost in thought.
Harry waited patiently. He knew that it was important that both of them kept their heads down but alert as well this year. But what would Voldemort try to do? Does he have to be just like Hermione and stop in the middle of a thought just to think to himself?
Snape looked up at Harry and sighed. "Harry, I'm not sure that you going on the Hogwarts Express is a good idea this year."
Harry's eyes went wide. "But, I always go on the train! Well, besides second year, and look what happened when I missed the train! Horrible things happen when we miss the train!" he echoed what he said to Ron earlier.
"Harry, the Dark Lord might try to take you from the train before school starts. Before I left, he was already starting to get desperate. You defeated him when you were only a baby, and now you're learning more and more magic to attack and defend yourself with. He wants to get to you before you can learn anything that might defeat him." Snape paused. "I believe that this year we should start to train you so that you will stand a chance when you go against the Dark Lord."
Harry liked the idea of training and learning more spells that he could use against Voldemort. Then an idea came to him. "What if we had a guard or something there? Like some of the Order comes on the train to make sure everything is safe. Kinda like we did last year where Moody and Tonks brought us to the station, but this time they would stay and take the trip with us. What do you think?" he asked hopefully.
Snape thought for a moment and finally said, "I shall ask Professor Dumbledore about it."
Harry smiled. At least they might be able to ride the train. "So, about class?"
"Will be changed."
Harry smiled wider. "Awesome."
"And he also said that you should start Occlumency again."
Harry nodded in agreement. "Alright, so when do we start?" he asked.
"I am not sure. Dumbledore didn't say. I'm sure he will be busy until school starts, so I'm guessing sometime after school starts."
Harry looked confused at this statement. "Wait, he's going to teach me?" he asked. "I thought you were going to."
Snape smiled internally and felt something glow within him. Harry had asked for him to continue teaching him Occlumency. "If you wish for me to, I will."
Harry smiled at the slightly guarded tone in his new guardian's voice. "I would," he said simply.
Snape nodded. "Very well, I shall speak with Albus and let him know that we will start the first Friday after school starts."
Harry nodded and then yawned. It had been a very long day.
"Time for bed," Harry said, standing. The nap earlier had helped, but after all the running around today his bed was starting to look very comfortable.
Snape nodded and walked with Harry back to his room.
"Goodnight," Harry said, walking inside his room. Harry was suddenly reminded when he had called Snape 'dad' and wondered if he would still be able to do that, seeing as how Snape was no longer his dad. He looked back and smiled. But before he could say anything he felt his head cleave in two and pain engulf him.
Harry felt someone by his side as the pain started to lessen. He then felt himself being lifted off the ground, by Snape he realized, and many lights turn on. Harry groaned and turned into the man's robes, the lights were only making his headache worse. He felt the arms around him tighten and he had to smile. Despite the pain he felt safe and comfortable, if this was what he had to look forward to when he had these attacks from Voldemort then he would not mind them so much.
The lights went off and he relaxed. He then felt Snape move and start to lower him down. Harry felt the soft mattress of his bed and sighed. It felt so good to lie down on something that wasn't a floor. He then felt the mattress dip at his head and hands find their way onto his head. Harry sighed as the hands massaged the headache away. Harry was reminded of when he was brought to the Hospital Wing and Snape used the same technique to calm him.
He was almost asleep when he heard Snape ask, "Are you alright?" Harry made a slight noise in his throat, hoping the man understood. "Is there anything to be worried about?" he asked.
Harry took a moment to replay that statement and make sure he understood, when he was sure he knew what the man was talking about he shook his head slightly letting the man know that it was only pain this time and not a vision.
"Alright, then I shall stay until you fall asleep," he heard the man say.
Which won't be very much longer if you keep that up, he thought. And he nodded slightly. The last thing Harry knew before he slipped into sleep was Snape's hands massaging his head, taking the headache away more and more until it was gone completely.
"Alright you lot, two at a time, now."
Harry waited patiently with his friends and father to walk through the entrance to Platform 9 3/4.
The last week passed without anything huge happening after that bout of pain from Voldemort. Harry, Ron, Hermione, and Ginny grew closer together, though Ron and Hermione were closer than either Ginny or Harry wanted to get with the couple. Flying had become an almost daily routine to help prepare three of the four for Quidditch. Ron was improving his self confidence as a great Keeper and Ginny was a superb Chaser.
Harry smiled as he remembered being told that he was Quidditch Captain from McGonagall. She had cornered him in the Great Hall and gave him the badge with one of her rare smiles and a warning to not get kicked off the team this year. He had reassured her and she had left with an approval nod.
Snape had talked to Dumbledore as he promised and because of it he was there along with Tonks, Remus, Mr. Weasley, and Kingsley who were going to be the guard for the train ride to school.
Quickly the groups went through. Tonks went with Remus first, then Mr. Weasley with Kingsley, Ron with Hermione, Ginny with her mother, and Snape went with Harry. The platform was busy as usual and Harry smiled at the sight of the train.
Mrs. Weasley was doing her usual rounds and had just gotten to Harry when they heard. "Mr. Potter!"
Harry broke away from Mrs. Weasley and turned to the yell and smiled widely as he saw Alex running toward him. "Hello, Alex!"
Alex ran up to him and demanded, "Up!"
Harry laughed and complied as he picked up the four year old. Harry looked around and saw the mother of the child sigh and smile at him and walk over.
"Well, it's nice to see all of you again," she greeted.
"Hello," the teens said, remembering the visit to Diagon Ally the previous week.
"I guess an introduction is necessary now," the mother said with a smile. "I'm Cassandra. Cassandra Pepper," she said, extending her hand to Harry.
"It's nice to meet you Mrs. Pepper," he started.
"Oh, please, call me Cassandra. It makes me feel old when people say 'Mrs. Pepper'."
Harry smiled and nodded. "Well, I'm Harry Potter and these are my friends," he said, motioning to the group behind him. She smiled at Harry and then turned to his friends.
When the introductions had been completed Cassandra then turned to her daughter. "My daughter, Laurie. It's her first year at Hogwarts," she said, tears coming to her eyes. "I wish her father had been able to see her off but," she stopped, collected herself, and smiled. "Well, it was very nice to meet all of you and-" she stopped. Harry saw her staring over his head. Her eyes went wide and her mouth dropped open. "Severus?" she whispered. Harry turned around and saw Snape, whose eyes were locked with Ms. Pepper's. "Oh, Severus, it's been too long!" she said, walking over to him, giving him a quick hug. "How long has it been? Fifteen? Twenty years?" she asked.
Harry's eyes, along with everyone's else in the vicinity, seemed to bulge out of his head and his mouth drop as the woman hugged their Potions master.
"Yes, about twenty years," Snape replied stiffly. Harry thought he saw a sparkle of some sort flash in Snape's eyes, but when he tried to get another look, it was gone.
"What do you do now, Severus?" she asked.
"I teach at Hogwarts," he replied more comfortably.
"Let me guess, Potions or Defense Against the Dark Arts?" she asked, smiling.
"Potions," he nodded.
She smiled wider. "Of course," she said.
"How's Octavius?" Snape asked.
Cassandra's eyes started to fill with tears and she shook her head. "He was killed by Death Eaters a few weeks ago."
Snape looked shocked and said, "I'm very sorry."
She nodded, composing herself. "Thank you, Severus. But I have Laurie and Alex, so I'm not totally abandoned. Octavius is inside them so I'm not alone."
Harry looked between the two adults and smiled. Well, at least he knows her. Maybe they were friends at school. Then the thought about it. I thought he didn't have any friends, besides my mother anyways.
She turned to Harry, as if reading his thoughts. "We went to school together. We really didn't get along, but we knew of each other and were at least pleasant to each other. I was a friend of your mother's actually, that's how we met."
Harry's breath caught in his throat. "What?" he asked almost silently.
She smiled tears coming back into her eyes. "Yeah," she laughed slightly. "We weren't best friends or anything, but we hung out and spent time together. She spent a lot of her time with Sev- or should I say Professor Snape," she said with a smile.
Harry smiled at the nickname for his father that his mother had given him. "Yeah, I've heard."
"Would you mind watching those two while I talk to him a bit longer?" she asked.
Harry shook his head. "No, it's fine, I love kids."
She smiled in gratitude and walked with Snape down the train station.
Harry brought Alex and Laurie over to his friends.
"So what house do you think you're going to be in, Laurie?" Hermione asked.
"I'm not sure," she said shyly.
Harry smiled. "Well, all the houses are pretty good. Well," he said, seeing the look from Ron. "All except Slytherin maybe."
The little girl made a face. "I don't want to go to Slytherin, Slytherin is a very bad house."
The Gryffindors all laughed and at that moment Draco Malfoy decided to walk right by their group and gave them a glare, which made them laugh even harder.
"That's right, Laurie," Ron said enthusiastically.
Soon after Laurie's mom came back with Professor Snape to say her last goodbye's. "Laurie, you be good now, and listen to your teachers and Headmaster Dumbledore."
Harry turned to Mrs. Weasley who was giving her last hugs to the teens. "Now, you all be good, and take care of yourself, understand?"
"Harry," Mr. Weasley called to him. "You know you need to keep your head down this year, right? Don't go into the Forest and don't go out alone with anyone, not even Ron or Hermione. Make sure that you have several people with you at all times."
"But why not with Ron or Hermione?" he asked.
Mr. Weasley sighed. "The Death Eater's children will be trying many different plans to try and get to you or Severus. They might use Polyjuice and turn into Ron or Hermione, so stay alert," he warned.
Harry sighed. "Yes, Mr. Weasley."
Mrs. Weasley took that moment to come to him. "Harry, dear. You be good, and stay out of trouble. If you need anything, don't hesitate to owl, alright?" she asked, giving him one of her famous hugs.
Harry smiled and nodded when he broke away from her. "Yes, and thank you, Mrs. Weasley."
Mrs. Weasley smiled back. "It's no problem, dear. Have a good school year, all of you, and we'll see you at Christmas!"
Harry turned to say goodbye to Alex, who suddenly appeared at his knees. Harry picked up the little boy and smiled. "Well, I guess it's time to say goodbye to you too, Alex."
Alex smiled. "Will I see you again?"
Harry nodded. "Definitely!"
The whistle for the train ran out and parents were ushering children onto the train and giving last minute goodbyes. Harry quickly walked over to Ms. Pepper and gave Alex to her. "Goodbye, Ms. Pepper, it was nice meeting you," Harry told her.
Cassandra gave Harry a quick hug before sending him off. "Go on, or you'll miss the train!"
Harry quickly got onto the train and closed the door. He turned around and waved at Alex and the Weasleys as the train started to move.
He kept waving until the families were out of sight. He turned around and walked over to his friends. "Well, we got off alright."
"Yeah, onto another year at Hogwarts!" Ron said, enthusiastically.
Harry smiled as he saw Snape turn the corner and catch his eye. "Yeah, another year at Hogwarts." But Harry had the feeling that things would be very different this year.
Oh my gosh….11000 words!!!!! Can you believe it???? I can't…lol. Anyways, this was the last chapter of In the Way!! I'm so sad to say goodbye…I may do a sequel, but I'm not sure. If you have any ideas for a plot, email me and let me know! My email is on my profile and you can email me anytime!
For those of you who are reading my other story, A Forgotten Lifetime, I will be updating soon. My plan is by the end of the month (I've got school starting on Monday…fun fun…). I wanted to send another big thank you out to all of my wonderful reviewers!!! I really appreciate all you guys have been saying, it's a real confidence booster for me!! I hope you enjoyed the ride and if you did, let me know! There's a nice little button down there that is just begging for you to push it! If I decide to do a sequel to this, I will put it up on my profile, but if you are curious about anything, or if something does not make sense or if I left something unanswered, let me know!
And last but certainly not least, my wonderful beta Nita! She is amazing and has helped me immensely!! I don't know what I would have don't without her!!