Chapter 18: Dumbledore's Secrets
Harry and Nym had just returned to the house after their picnic, if it could be called that. The food itself had barely been touched and it was more of a way to rebuild some energy they had spent before Dumbledore's arrival. Dobby didn't seem to mind at all, he happily cleaned up the yard where they had spent the afternoon and disposed of the unused food while his 'masters' went to get cleaned up and changed.
Dumbledore didn't arrive until almost 7:00 that evening and he carried a large and obviously old tome under his arm. Dobby led him into the small sitting room next to the kitchen where Harry and Nym were waiting patiently, watching the fire.
"Good evening, Mr. and Mrs. Potter," the aged wizard said. "I do apologize for my tardiness; I had some business come up that was simply unavoidable."
Harry and Nym nodded their assent and waited for him to continue.
"I believe Tonks has already gone over the basics of what I wanted to discuss," the Headmaster left the question hanging.
"Yes, sir, she did. She told me of the three categories of magical users and said that the rest was up to you to tell me."
"Indeed, Harry, indeed. I believe that the best place to start, as with any story, is the beginning."
Dumbledore didn't hesitate to delve into the story of Halloween night of almost 1000 years ago and it didn't take but an hour to get hit up to the point that Cordai left the Hogwarts grounds.
"Who was he sir?"
Dumbledore smiled genially, "I have no idea. As far as I know no one had ever seen him before and no one has seen him since. It's rather odd and somewhat suspicious but he seemed to have a great deal of knowledge for a mere messenger. Mayhap one day we might find out more about him. Then again, maybe we won't."
Harry frowned and looked his headmaster in the face, "If I understand this story correctly then, the four founders were the first four of the nine of these 'hybrids' that would ever be born?"
"Well, yes and no. They were indeed the first of this generation you could say. I highly doubt that in the history of the world that there have never been any more alive or that in the countless years to come that no more will ever exist. I have my suspicions but that's all they are, suspicions.
"To continue on the story we move to the time of 1012. Gryffindor acts as an emissary for the remaining founders of Hogwarts, Slytherin having already been slain by Gryffindor to end his reign of terror. He contacts the fifth of the nine. I'm sure you remember this lady being discussed in History of Magic, Wendelin the Weird."
Harry nodded that he indeed remembered her though he wouldn't admit that it was from a chocolate frog card instead of the boring old ghost of a teacher.
Nym just glanced sideways at Harry knowing that he was lying to the headmaster. He had told her in no uncertain terms that he had usually slept or plotted something or other in Binns'' class. She strongly suspected that he had heard of Wendelin from Hermione since Dumbledore didn't question the sincereness he displayed.
"Wendelin was, pardon the crude comparison, much like the Weasley twins. She was a very brilliant witch in her own right but she had no desire to use the talents given to her for anything more than her own amusement. You can imagine the kind of fun she could have amusing herself amongst the muggles using the rare talents that Cordai had mentioned to the founders.
"Gryffindor was able to convince her to return to Hogwarts and study her magic a little more thoroughly under the three founder's tutelage. Sadly she never made it back to Hogwarts. She wanted to do one last prank against the muggles by impersonating a vampire.
"Even the unique magic she could wield was no use against a stake through the heart while she slept."
Nym sat quietly through the whole conversation thus far and it appeared she had no interest in saying anything at all during the remainder of the conversation either. She simply say quietly and listened to Dumbledore tell the story that by all rights she had no right to hear.
"So, Harry, we have now uncovered the fifth of the nine. I'm sure you can hazard a guess at two of the others but I'm curious as to whether or not you would know the last two of them?"
Harry stared at the headmaster as he sat in contemplation. "I'm guessing that since Hermione's never mentioned any of this at all during our times at school that none of this is commonly taught or even written down in any book, save perhaps the book that you have with you, if my guess is correct.
"That would mean that its handed down from one to the next, in which case since you have the book you would be one of them, and…..and I…would be the last one," Harry finished in a whisper as he reached for Nym's hand and held it tightly in his.
Dumbledore's eyes were twinkling brighter than ever that night, "Most admirable guesses my boy. You are indeed correct on the two of us. But who are the other two I wonder?"
Harry looked puzzled. "I have no idea, Professor."
"You have the knowledge at hand to be able to guess one of the remaining two but I should doubt that you will have guessed the last of them.
"I shall give you a hint. Think June….." Dumbledore finished, the twinkle a little less obvious now.
Nym could feel his hand tighten noticeably at the mention of June. She racked her brain to think of what could possibly be meant by that statement. It was extremely difficult for her to pinpoint anything since so much had happened in the last few months not to mention learning Harry's entire life story.
Raising a slightly trembling right hand to his scar, "... And the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal."
It hit Harry like a ton of bricks and judging by the involuntary squeeze Nym gave his hand she knew it too meant that Lord Voldemort was one of the nine, which didn't make Harry feel any better about the situation at all.
"Then it means that this isn't 'the power he knows not?'"
"I'm afraid not my boy. Though I already told you what power you have that Lord Voldemort will never have nor understand."
"I know, love," Harry said sarcastically. He was half way through rolling his eyes when he smacked rather hard on the back of the head by an indignant Nym. "Sorry," he mumbled apologetically.
"So now we have 8 of the nine as I'm sure you noticed.
"In order we have:
Wendelin the Weird
Tom Marvolo Riddle
Harry James Potter.
"Now the only one we have left to discover is the person that was the bridge in the time gap as it seems. Rather than prolonging the guessing game I shall just give the name of the ninth and final magical person to make up this group. A good friend of mine who only recently passed on. Nicolas Flamel was the keeper of this very book," Dumbledore explained calmly while patting the book with his right hand.
"As I'm sure you have no doubt guessed by now, this is the very same book that the mysterious messenger left in the care of the founders of Hogwarts.
"This book has been passed down from each of the previous holders to the newest in the chain. The exceptions to this are Wendelin the Weird, who died before being able to read it, and Tom Riddle. I was always cautious when it came to Tom. I knew he was behind the opening of the Chamber of Secrets but I couldn't prove anything. Since that time, even before then, I had kept a close eye on him to see which way he would go."
"What do you know of powerful magical numbers Harry," asked Dumbledore.
"According to Hermione, 7 is the most powerful magic number in existence."
"Quite right, quite right. Then do you find it odd or perhaps significant that there were nine 'chosen ones' and of the nine of us, only 7 have read the book, and only 7 of them did not turn dark?"
Dumbledore watched Harry for a second and decided that since it was already nearing the two hour mark of their conversation to just finish up what he had to say and allow the boy some time to sort out his thought on the matter.
"That is neither here nor there at the moment, just an old man's ramblings. This book, I shall leave in your care to read from and learn from. I suspect that you will have a great many questions for me as I did for Nicolas. I shall take my leave and allow you both some time to digest what I have divulged this evening."
Dumbledore stood and nodded goodbye to Harry and Nym before stepping closer to the fireplace. "Oh and Harry, I should like it if you brought by some pepper imps when you drop by. Good evening." With a swirl of green flames the aged headmaster departed the newly chosen House of Potter.
It was sometime rather late the following morning that Harry awoke. Nym was still sound asleep beside him and he was really tempted to just lay back down and go back to sleep but now that his mind was even beginning to process that thought others came unbidden to his mind as well. Too many thoughts to comfortably forget about in the attempt at yet more sleep yet to beautiful wife.
He stifled a yawn, covering his mouth as he slid out of the huge king size bed and padded barefoot on the Persian rug that decorated the floor of the master suite towards the bathroom to shower and get ready for the day ahead.
Nym rolled over in bed and made to throw her arm around Harry only to be slightly disappointed to hit nothing but sheets and pillows. She could hear the water running in the bathroom and knew that he probably hadn't been awake very long if he was still in the shower.
Without skipping a beat Nym jumped out bed and made a quick morphing change to herself before sneaking into the bathroom to join in on the shower. Just because her husband wasn't adventurous enough to sneak into her showers if she started alone didn't mean that she was the same way with him.
Dobby was getting a late breakfast ready for his master and mistress when he heard a strange voice say, "'ello 'Arry." Followed by a rather unmanly yell and a thud.
It couldn't be any more obvious to the delighted house elf that his new family was nowhere near the same as his last one.
It was a somewhat disgruntled Harry Potter that sat down to breakfast that morning next to an all too happy and smug looking Nym Potter.
Nym could be heard thanking Dobby for all his wonderful work with the food while Harry could be barely be heard muttering about 'evil witches' and 'stupid tests'.
"Oh, that's enough out of you. It wasn't a test and you know it. While I love the fact that you're attracted to me as a person and not a metamorph, I've been a metamorph my whole life and its not going to change now.
"Besides," Nym finished with a smirk. "Can you honestly tell me you've never imagined what it would be like to see her naked?"
It was a testament to their somewhat short and unorthodox relationship that showed how much Harry had matured and managed to control his emotions. Only the faintest hint of a blush was visible.
"I was a teenager when I met her, and you for that matter, I can't deny not thinking about either of you. The difference is, I wake up next to you every morning," Harry shot back with a smirk of his own when he saw Nym fumble with her fork at the mention of him thinking of her naked before they were married.
Deciding a change of subject was in order before things got entirely too out of hand she asked what Harry planned on doing for the day.
"This whole thing is out of my league now. I was gonna help teach you things to become an auror and all that but I don't know how much of a help I can be anymore. I can only do a bit of magic like that for my morphing I can't use it to cast spells or hexes or anything major like that.
"I think the only one alive that can even offer you suggestions anymore is Albus."
Harry sighed, "That may or may not be true, I don't know yet. You read as much of that book as I did. You know that its not that much different from normal magic in the sense that you still have to have an idea of what you want you're magic to do before you can make it happen. I think learning the curses and spells that you were going to teach me would be a good thing, if for no other reason that a handy backup if I fail spectacularly at this. Ouchhh! What the hell was that for?"
"We had a few talks about self esteem during July didn't we?"
"Yeah so, that didn't mean you had to sting me. Hey, how'd you do that anyways? You didn't use a wand and you said you couldn't do regular magic the way Dumbledore and I can."
"Yes O-Great and Powerful husband of mine," Nym said sarcastically with a laugh. "What I just did, didn't have anything at all to do with magic. It's also something that you should have recognized for what it was almost immediately."
"What are you on about? Ahh! Stop that. Ahh. Damnit Nym stop it, what the hell are you doing?"
Nym just grinned at him and casually glanced down at their feet.
Harry could have slapped himself for being so stupid. Underneath the table was another one of the fancy dress rugs similar to the one in the bedroom. Harry could just see his wife's bare feet rubbing furiously against the rug as she reached out to get him again.
'Two can play at that game.' Harry thought.
It was a rather long time before either of them got back to doing anything 'important' like reading a book that would help him defeat a Dark Lord.
A/N: Another long delay in between chapters. I really am sorry for that. My life has been so turned around lately I haven't gotten anything accomplished. Hope you all enjoy the chapter.