(Black Rose Cottage)
Harry, Sirius, Cordelia and Ginny were all sitting down for a late afternoon dinner and discussing plans to go to the Potter-Evans Manor for a portion of the summer.
"Well I don't want to spend the whole summer there pup." Sirius announced "I was able to secure tickets to the World Cup match, and I figured we can go as a family. I know that Arthur has gotten tickets as well for him and his family. I'd invite Moony but its supposed to be a full moon so he will be indisposed."
"Thats great Padfoot!" Harry and Ginny both exclaimed. Cordelia just smiled and nodded her assent before adding in "We should go ahead and get the invitations sent and then Ginny needs to head back to the Burrow."
Despite some grumbling from both teens once they finished the invitations and Harry had given Ginny an embarrassing hug and kiss goodbye, thanks to Sirius' whistles, Ginny was taken back to the Burrow by Cordelia.
Draco was not a happy child at this point. He had come home to find his father in a coma, a house elf dead, his mother in near hysterics and a bloody great snake enthroned in the great room. Worst of all his father's 'friends' kept popping in and out at odd times of the day and night. Draco, in all honesty, was not sure of the views his father espoused about pure blood superiority. Granger who was a mudblood was undeniably the smartest witch in his year, if not the whole school excluding the professors. Not fair that she was a pretty as well. Potter was a half-blood and had more power in his little toe than Draco's father. Of the pure bloods he knew in Slytherin, only Parkinson was more powerful magically than Draco, and Greengrass and Davis were both smarter in all honesty. His two friends growing up Crabbe and Goyle were poster children of Pure Blood, 15 generations of verified pure blood descent. And they would be lucky if together they could tie a shoe lace, they only made it through their class work because they were able to intimidate other students into doing it for them. He personally was to scared right now to leave his room, some of fathers 'friends' were not people he wanted to run into alone while father was in a coma.
(Hogwarts Potion Classroom)
Severus worked happily among the three large cauldrons bubbling merrily atop the counters. Boomslang and shredded Puffskein in one, essence of murtlap and aconite in another and dragons blood and manticore venom in the last. This had to be the most complex potion he had ever made, and it would bring the Dark Lord back into a physical form. That was perhaps the most important thing that needed to happen right now if all the plans were to come into fruition.
(Several Points around England)
In other parts of the English countryside items were recovered or stolen, muggles were killed by the score the only constant throughout all the cases when they were investigated by the Yard was that similar people were seen at all the sites. People dressed in black wearing white masks.
Neville looked at his Gran with determination in his face, this alone pleased the old matriarch greatly not that she would let it show it would destroy whatever had caused this change in Neville. To think it all started with a letter to go spend time at a friends house!
"I am going Gran! And I intend to stay there the entire time listed, for Merlin's Sake its only a week!" Neville almost roared.
"Language young man, you will NOT speak to me in such a tone of voice!" She replied "I do not have a problem with you going to spend a week at a friends house. I have a problem with the fact that I do not know who this person is nor do I know where it is you will be going! Until you can answer those points then you are going nowhere."
"Daddy!" Luna cried out, holding the invitation unopened in her hand
"I will be gone for a week this summer visiting forgotten places and learning ancient lore!"
"Excellent dear, do tell me when you get back. And make sure you have that article on the links between Cornish Hens and the declining number of Cornish Pixies finished before you go."
Hermione had to sit down and explain to her parents in detail actually in excruciating detail about what was happening that summer. The trip to see the World Cup was not that big of a deal, it was right before school started back up anyway. No, the problem was the week at Harry's before that. They had heard of Harry before, and even seen him briefly after her second year, but they were hesitant about her spending a week with someone they had never met before.
This of course left her with only one real option, so she reached into her desk to pull out what she would need to fulfill her promise to show.
It was easier at the Burrow for Ron and Ginny to get permission to go, well easy for Ginny at any rate. She would be spending time with her Betrothed after all with supervision by a responsible adult. Cordelia would be there, Sirius was not what Molly considered responsible. It took a little more persuading for Ron to be able to go, he had been annoying the rest of the family with his antics, its bad when the twins pranks cross the line from funny to humiliating when the target is a family member. He eventually took the hint and apologized where needed and received permission to go as well.
Things had started to settle down somewhat when a pair of letters arrived for Ginny.
Now he was panicked. Draco paced about his small room restlessly for what seemed like hours. He had gone downstairs the night before after he thought everyone had left. While he was walking by the great room he heard the voice of Professor Snape talking to someone. Always willing to gain any information he could use later he stopped to listen.
What do you wish for me to do next My Lord? The potions will be ready to be used by the end of the summer but require certain...sacrifices for the desired results. Snape had said
We will use the boy and his mother for that part Severus, a hissing voice had replied, neither will be of much use to me after the ritual anyway. We will send the pair to the World Cup as a 'reward' Lucious as well if he pulls through, and perform the ritual immediately upon their return.
Draco had fled at that point. He had gone back to his room and since then had spent every waking hour trying to find a way out of this for him and his mother. He could care less about his father at this point, the last healer brought in to look at him had recommended sending him to the long term ward at St. Mungos. Dumbledore was unavailable to help, still recovering his senses after his longterm poisoning. McGonnegal might be able to help, but he was unsure as to her ability to do so or how to contact her. The same went for professor Lupin, and Snape was obviously out as he was in on the whole sad affair to begin with. That left only one other person he could think of to help, but he had no way of contacting him. Well, actually he did,but there was no way to guarantee that she would even bother to read the letter before destroying it. Well actually there was. He quickly grabbed his traveling cloak and wand and headed towards the floo connection.
(Black Rose Cottager)
Harry looked at the two almost identical responses from his two friends in wonder. Well this should be relatively easy to accomplish but it would be cutting some things a little closer than he wanted to. He penned a quick letter to Ginny and sent it off with Hedgwig before heading back to his exercise routine.
There has been a bit of a snag with the invites I sen to Hermione and Neville. His Gran and her folks want to meet with us...well me actually. So I was thinking why don't you come with me, Sirius and Dea to see Neville's gran and we can all drag Ron with us to meet Hermione's folks? Let me know tonight when we talk again what you think, we would be doing this sometime within the next few days.
Ginny decided that it was a splendid idea, "Mum! I have a few dinner dates with Harry, Sirius and Dea. We will be meeting with Madam Longbottom and Mr and Mrs Granger. Harry wants to know if Ron can come along to meet the Granger's."
She only absentmindedly heard her mum's agreement to the plan when she reached for the second letter, this one was carried by a Gringotts owl and was addressed to her as well.
Lady Ginerva Weasley-Potter in waiting,
We have been asked by a confidential source to arrange a meeting between you and Lord Potter and this source as soon as possible. Please respond as to when would be a good time for this meeting. It will take place here on the insistence of this source.
Senior Account manager
Ginny looked at the letter in wonderment.
Harry! She sent through her mind link I need you to come to the Burrow please
Is everything ok! She received back from Harry, she sent a quick wordless assurance I'll be right there
Eventually they settled on taking care of the meeting the same day they planned to meet Madam Longbottom and Neville for dinner and sent their reply.
(Gringots Secure Meeting Room, A few days later)
Sirius and Cordelia had to be left out of the meeting by the orders of Gringots, as they were not part of the sources agreement. Harry and Ginny sat at one end of a long meeting table facing the doors, curious as to who this "confidential source" might be. The mystery was quickly resolved when the door entered to admit a familiar head of blond hair. Ginny sat there in stunned silence as Harry bolted up out of his seat.
"Malfoy?" Harry said incredulously "What do you want?"
"Lord Potter," Draco began in a very constrained voice "I have come to you seeking both assistance in saving the life of my mother and asylum for the two of us. I swear upon my magic and the name of Malfoy that I harbor no hidden agendas in this matter."
Both Harry and Ginny continued to look on in silence, expressions of awe and confusion apparent on their faces, as the magic sealed Draco's ability to both use magic and to continue the Malfoy line to the promise. Draco took the time to look closely at them, a single tear began to run down his face and he whispered "Please Harry. You are the only one left I can think of who can help me." The two teens shook themselves out of their stupor and after a lengthy discussion Harry asked for permission to bring both Cordelia and Sirius into the meeting. Draco pondered the inclusion of a fully trained Auror and the only person to ever escape Azkhaban only briefly before assenting to their presence. After another hour of questions and answers the conspirators split up.