Disclaimers: This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by J.K Rowling and Bloomsbury Publishing also Kawoosh! Productions and Gekko Film Corporation, and Metro-Goldwyn-Meyer Television. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended.
Notes: Heh. So this is it. The end. After 6 months, 30 chapters, countless interruptions, more words than I have ever written on the same subject ever, more reviews than I've ever had before, more reviews saying 'this isn't in order' than I ever would have imagined, more confusion, time continuum questions and requests for me to 'put the damn thing in order' than I could have possibly conceived (I mean – is it really that hard to follow?) and more amusement for my colleagues – when particularly bad/insulting reviews turned up - than I ever thought. This is it folks. The longest author note and, more importantly, the final chapter.
I would like to thank EVERYONE who reviewed. Seriously – I probably wouldn't have finished it without your thoughts and inspiration. To those who still aren't entirely sure what the heck happened – I intend to re-write and post this story in chronological order at some point in the future. I have no idea when/what it will be called.
And now – on with the story!
'And just what have you got in the box?' Jack queried as he walked towards Harry, sitting out at their favourite fishing spot, gazing across the waters of Atlantis, a few pieces of paper in his hand.
Harry turned and shaded his eyes with his hand still holding the papers. He smiled. 'Hey Jack – this is my delivery from the Daedalus courtesy of Hermiod. Smythe arranges for it to be delivered and Hermiod beams it down to my room. I'm just going through the news from earth.'
'Anything interesting?' Jack said, sitting down next to the box, next to Harry.
'Mainly newspaper articles. A letter – nothing highly secretive that you can't look at. A few other reports…' He saw Jack's face, showing he was very tempted. 'Here.' He shoved the box over to Jack. 'Just don't touch the red box at the bottom? That stuff is private.'
Jack pulled the box closer to himself so he could easily reach into it.
'Go ahead – read. You can read them aloud to me if you want.' Harry said, gesturing to the box. 'They're all in date order. I'm just deciding whether to read this last one – I can wait until you finish the others.'
Jack opened the lid of the box, noting both the printed out reports, newspapers and what looked suspiciously like scrolls. He looked a sheet of paper stuck inside the lid and noticed that it was a printed out list of what order the papers were in. He doubled-checked the list, and then took out the first scroll, reading the signature at the bottom he grinned and adopted a high-pitched voice.
''Dear Uncle John and Cousin James,
How are you both? I hope you are keeping well. I'm back in school now. It has been difficult getting back into things – but as soon as everyone realised I was in the right frame of mind and well away from that destructive former friend I told you about, and was ready to apply myself properly, things got back to normal – like they were before all the silly things happened.
It has certainly been challenging. After everything that happened I was afraid I would have really low grades – but I firmly believe that I will finish school with the best results I could possibly achieve – and hopefully – beat everyone else in my year!
Love to you both,
Harry smirked. 'Can you stop with the silly voice now? Your throat must be killing you.'
Jack coughed and then grinned. 'All right, stick boy. I won't carry on the voice. You're right – it did hurt.' He started rolling the scroll. 'I take it this is your friend Hermione?'
'Yep – that was from a few months ago – just after she went back to school. The box has a lot more to go yet. Although – most of it is newspapers.' Harry lay down on the floor. 'Going to read the next one? They should all be labelled – 1, 2, and so on – so I read them in order.'
'I did notice the list.' Jack remarked. 'Why can't you just let me read them to myself?'
'Because I still don't know whether I want to know what's in this one.' Harry said, holding up a small envelope. 'I think I want to hear everything else again first – please?' He put on a puppy-dog expression that had Jack scowling.
'Fine. If I must.' Jack looked into the box and pulled out the second scroll. 'Hah. Daily Prophet – that's the newspaper – right?'
'Yes. Biased tabloid rag.' Harry muttered, closing his eyes, focussing on Jack's voice.
'Headline on the 'biased tabloid rag'' Jack quoted. ''Dumbledore survives Death Eater fury! Remus Lupin dies from same curse as He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named. Severus Snape declared War Hero. Minister for Magic, Rufus Scrimgeour awards Snape with 1st Class Order of Merlin. Remus Lupin's death to be investigated.' Sounds like a gripping read. You want me to read all the articles?'
'Nah – just the headlines is always enough with the Prophet.'
Harry snorted. 'More often than not – but Smythe picked a few choice copies – so they're probably more accurate than usual.'
'Ahh. Okay. You want me to read the next scroll?'
Jack picked up the next one from the box and began reading, his eyebrows rising p in disbelief as he did so. ''Harry Potter wanted for questioning – 'Remus Lupin died defending me' claims Dumbledore. Scrimgeour agrees werewolf laws to be re-examined in honour of Hero Lupin.' Where do they get this…?'
'It's the Prophet.' Harry replied. 'Accuracy is not something they believe in.'
'Right.' Jack drawled. 'Should I be concerned about agents for the Wizarding world coming here to arrest you anytime soon?'
'Nah – check the date – it was months ago. Read the next one.'
Jack shook his head in disbelief at Harry's nonchalant attitude. 'Fine. Oh, okay - this one is much better, 'Hermione Granger receives highest NEWTS in most subjects ever awarded in Great Britain. Hogwarts comment – 'We're very proud.' Muggleborn Granger states – 'I want to work in Ministry'. Rufus Scrimgeour offers administrative post in his office!' Good to see your friend getting her reward.'
'Yeah – I was pleased with that one. If anyone deserves to do well – it would be Hermione.'
Jack grinned and reached for the next scroll, as he scanned it before reading it aloud his eyes widened. ''Solicitors acting for Harry Potter file charges against Ministry of Magic, Hogwarts and Albus Dumbledore citing fraud and attempted murder amongst the alleged crimes. Weasley family also accused in case that has shaken the very foundations of our community. Eminent solicitor Nicholas Flamel has stated 'This has been a long time coming. The case is water-tight. We have evidence that will convict.' Ministry comment – 'Serious mistakes have been made, our top researcher, Hermione Granger has been assigned to the case. In other news – Weasley Wizarding Wheezes twins Fred and George Weasley have issued a statement declaring that they are standing against their family on the side of Harry Potter. Fred/George stated to this publication – 'We don't like the way our former family treated Harry. Our former sister tried to drug him with a love potion. Our business owes its very beginnings to Harry Potter. We're with him in this. We intend to complete the rite of disownment as soon as possible.'' He frowned. 'And the Weasley twins are?'
'The most notorious pranksters since my father and his friends went to school.' Harry replied sitting up with a sad smile on his face. 'They were part of the Weasley family – until the rite of course – it removes them and any of their descendants from the Weasley family. It's irreversible – something you only do when you really want to disown someone.' He saw Jack's puzzled expression. 'Put it this way – my godfather ran away from home, his mother ensured he wasn't listed on their family tree tapestry anymore. No contact between them – but not even they completely disowned each other.'
'And these twins did?'
'One day I'll introduce you to the Weasley twins.' Harry grinned. 'You'll love their humour.' He said as he lay back down. 'Read on!'
Jack mock-glared at eh order from Harry and sighed a much put upon sigh before picking up the next scroll. 'Ahh – this is what we like! 'Albus Dumbledore removed from positions after court case. Ministry admits - 'There is no punishment we could carry out to fit the crimes he has committed in the name of the light against Harry Potter.' Dumbledore's last words to the court 'I was justified in my actions – I did it for the greater good.' Weasley family declared bankrupt.' How did that happen?'
'The next one explains what happened with that lovely family.'
'Ahh yes – you're right – it does. 'Gringotts admit seizure of Weasley assets. Senior Account Goblin Pishchik stated – 'The family of wizards known as the Weasleys have been systematically robbing certain vaults over a number of years. These vaults belong to the Potter family. It is believed that they thought an alliance between their youngest child and the last scion of the Potter family, Harry James Potter, would ensure that their crimes never came to light. These withdrawals were initially authorised by the magical guardian of Mr Potter, Albus Dumbledore and later by the keeping of Mr Potter's vault key. The Weasley family ensured their crimes went undetected by the bank through their eldest son, former Gringotts employee – Bill Weasley. His contract has been terminated and Gringotts have issued a retrieval of the vault funds stolen as per the ancient pound of flesh case from 1517.' Pound of flesh? I thought that was…'
'Shakespearean? Yeah – I did too – Smythe included a note which said Shakespeare borrowed the idea from the real case – and yes – before you ask – the goblins at Gringotts are entitled to take a pound of flesh – if they believe so.'
'Seriously?' Jack whistled. 'I'm guessing they really didn't think they would be caught.'
'I think the potion in my drink from Ginny was probably one of the last attempts to get me hooked. I'm just glad the twins weren't in on it.' He sighed, and then smiled. 'I'm glad that not everyone managed to betray me.'
'And your friend Hermione.'
'Yeah – I know I wouldn't have survived without that girl. Carry on?'
Jack cleared his throat, ''Scrimgeour states 'Potter case has shocked many. Most of the atrocities were carried out under Fudge. I have authorised a full scale inquiry into the findings of the case.' Potter solicitors confirm – Potter is alive but not willing to return to Great Britain in current political climate. Hermione Granger, spokesperson for minister's office states that she will personally 'Clean up the Ministry of Magic.'' That girl is so cool.'
'Very true.' Harry grinned. 'I'm just glad she's on my side.'
'And now I find the last scroll. Is it good?' Jack asked as he began unrolling it.
'Oh you have no idea.' Harry said, smirking.
'I don't understand… Wait a minute – is this what I think it is…' Jack trailed off and read the details. 'Holy Hannah! It is! 'Daily Prophet Special Edition! Solicitor Nicholas Flamel today revealed an elder brother of Lucius Malfoy, long thought to be dead, is alive and capable of doing magic. Flamel claims that the brother has spent time on the continent refining his magic, and in a stunning closed session of the Wizengamot, the soon to be pronounced new Lord Malfoy shocked the chamber by producing a new type of apparition that he claims he leant on the continent. As such, a display of this type of advanced magic is enough to ensure that any counter claims by the current incumbent will be immediately dismissed.' I thought he couldn't do magic.'
'Who said he did?'
'Well… The entire court of the Wizengamot – whoever they are.'
'Yes, well – its not like any of them would have seen Thor beam someone up for a second and then move them somewhere else in the room – is it?'
Jack's jaw dropped. 'That… Is incredibly sneaky.'
Harry grinned. 'I know. I asked Hermiod to pass the idea on – apparently – everyone approved.'
'And now – what will be in store for the former Lord Malfoy?'
Harry chuckled. 'I have no idea. But knowing Smythe – it should be good. Or bad – if you're a Malfoy.'
Jack looked into the box. 'That looks like all there is…'
'Oh – there should be one more – you'll like the last one.'
'Yeah?' Jack checked the list and then rummaged around for the missing paper. 'Oh – controversial – a copy of The Times – not the Prophet for a change. Ah yes. I see what has got you smirking,' he said, grinning back at Harry. 'Financial news – today the private holding company, Potter International PLC announced the takeover of Grunnings Drills. The takeover, long suspected by city analysts, has been seen as the only possible resolution in what could have been a long drawn out financial disaster for Grunnings. As such, Potter International PLC are now responsible for the running of the company and paid one penny for the whole company in a deal which sees the directors at Grunnings wholly responsible for the prior debts amounting to millions, whilst Potter International PLC ensure that the company remains in production. Former company director, Mr Vernon Dursley remains at large, in spite of the now massive manhunt for the criminal mastermind.'' He snorted. 'Seriously, 'criminal mastermind'?'
Harry shrugged, a twinkle in his eye. 'How else would you explain the money just vanishing from the accounts like magic?'
Jack rolled his eyes. 'Yeah. Its not like magic is real or anything is it – stick boy.' He put the article back in the box. 'I think that's it – except for your red box and what you have in your hand…' He looked again at the papers in Harry's hands. 'A sealed envelope?'
'A final report – on why Remus betrayed everyone. Both Smythe and Snape have said it gets ugly – and that the reasons are now dead and buried. They say not to read it. I want to… But…' Harry replied, turning his attention back to the envelope he held, his good humour vanishing. 'I don't think I want to know. At least – not yet. It's too close – you know?' Harry said, looking up at Jack. 'Its all still too raw for me to think about. Maybe tomorrow…' He trailed off.
'So don't.' Jack said with a shrug.
'Don't. It will still be here tomorrow. Or next week. Or next month. Or next year. Read it when you feel you need to read it – not because you think you should. Read it when you can. Until then…' He held out a hand. 'Let me keep it safe for you – away from all of this,' he gestured with his other hand at the scrolls and the box. 'These are good memories – well, some of them are, at least. Don't let Lupin ruin these for you too…' He held out his hand for the letter again.
Harry considered Jack's words, before nodding. He reached over to hand him the envelope, when a sudden breeze caught the paper and blew it up out of their reach.
They both scrambled up after it, only to watch in disbelief as it landed far in the deep water.
'Well.' Harry said, blinking at the now sinking white square. 'I guess I'll never know now.'
'Nah.' Jack replied. 'Smythe can always type you up another one. Those kinds of reports always get done in triplicate anyway.'
Harry snorted. 'Yeah – you're probably right. It'll just have to stay a mystery for a little while longer.' He made his way back to the box and carefully stacked the scrolls back inside. As he picked it up, he turned and faced the sky, a wide smile on his relaxed face. 'It's a beautiful day.' He said suddenly, 'fancy going flying?'
That's all folks. I imagine there will be one or two vignettes to go with this fic at some point. Enjoy the next Harry Potter book! Thought, comments, queries?