Disclaimer: I do not own Harry Potter. JK Rowling is the genius who created that series!
Gift of a Grim
Chapter One: A Map, A Rat, and A Mystery
By Ebona Nite
Summary: What if Harry's third year at Hogwarts goes a bit differently? AU starting with Trelawney's prediction… which is a tad different than last time.
Harry cringed as Trelawney's hand fell on his shoulder all he wanted was to get out of this tower! Turning slightly, he started as her eyes suddenly misted over.
Trelawney's head rolles back, her eyes rolling into her head revealing the whites.
"Tonight. It will happen tonight... The false one will be revealed… Soon the falsely-accused will be free and the false one imprisoned. The Grim will give the Lightning-Child the greatest gift… but the false one will escape and return to the service of his master…"
Trelawney's eyes rolled around, then she snapped upright. "Oh dear, I seem to have drifted off a bit… Well run along Mr. Potter, but mind you beware of the Grim! And the number thirteen! And –"
But Harry was gone by then, as fast as he could get down that ladder.
Not too hungry, Harry headed to the Astronomy Tower to think instead of the Great Hall. He didn't want to talk to Ron and Hermione until he had sorted through his thoughts on what just happened back in the Divination room with Trelawney. She had been even more creepy than normal, and that deep, gravelly voice! That couldn't have been a real prediction… right?
Pulling out the Marauder's Map, Harry opened it up. Professor Lupin had handed it back to him at the end of their last lesson on the Patronus, making him promise not to use unwisely. Although there could be several meaning to that… Harry shook away the thought. Thinking like that usually led to punishments in the Dursley household… no matter how fun it was to let spiders into his Aunt and Uncles bedroom… No, better not think like that.
Absently his eyes trailed over the Map. Most people were in the Great Hall just now (this author can't remember the schedule, so let's just say it's dinnertime), Professor Lupin was in his office, and the Gryffindor dorms were empty… except for one name.
Harry blinked and looked again. There was that name again! He'd seen it in the halls one night… but Lupin had said Pettigrew was dead. What was going on? Was the Map faulty?
Deciding to figure this out once and for all, Harry grabbed the map and headed for the dorms.
Sneaking up the stairs to the third year boys' dorms, Harry checked the Map one more time before erasing it and sticking it in his pocket. He pulled out his wand, then peaked into the room.
It was empty.
Harry crept towards Ron's bed, where the Map had indicated Pettigrew. There was no one there, except – Scabbers?
Scooping up the surprised rat, who apparently hadn't been killed by Crookshanks, Harry stuffed the chocolate frog Scabbers had been nibbling on into his pocket with him. "Hey mate, Ron will be glad to see you! Did you know we thought you'd been eaten by Hermione's cat? You must be hungry, let's head to the Great Hall."
Scabbers was only too happy to eat, confident Harry was taking him to more food. Harry, however, had different ideas. That Map clearly thinks that Scabbers is Pettigrew. Lupin knows something about the Map he isn't telling me, and he also knew Pettigrew. I'll go ask him. I can always give Ron his rat back later.
Harry knocked on Professor Lupin's door. "Come in."
Walking in, he saw another of those goblets Snape had been giving Lupin all year, sitting on his professor's desk. "Ah Harry, what can I do for you? It's getting late isn't it, shouldn't you be having dinner?"
"Yeah, well, I wasn't too hungry. Um, professor…. Look, I know you know something about this Map, or at least you might recognize the spells on it. I think it's broken or something." He had his hand in his pocket now, petting Scabbers. The rat had started to shake. He didn't want to startle it and have it escape again – Ron wouldn't like it.
"Oh? Well… I suppose I could take a look. What is the problem? And you aren't using it to break rules, are you? I can't, as a teacher, allow you to get away with anything I catch you at."
"No professor, it's just – Scabbers calm down! – there's a name on here I didn't expect, and it keeps targeting Ron's pet rat."
The graying man froze. "Pet… rat did you say? May I see the Map? What name is it?"
Harry handed him the paper, and watched Lupin activate it. He was right, Professor Lupin knew more about the Map than he had said. Harry pulled Scabbers from his pocket as well. "Here, the Map keeps saying Scabbers is that Peter Pettigrew person."
Remus Lupin's blue eyes turned gold. "Hello… Wormtail."
Author's End Notes: This started out as a oneshot of just a few scenes. Then I realized I wasn't explaining how some of these characters could be where they were, so I expanded it to two chapters. Then I realized I was still missing some vital information, and… at any rate the original oneshot is actually now the last chapter. All the rest of this just explains how I got there, what's different, and why.
Hope you enjoyed! Please review!