Disclaimer: All publicly recognizable characters, settings, etc. are the property of their respective owners. The original characters and plot are the property of the author. The author is in no way associated with the owners, creators, or producers of any media franchise. No copyright infringement is intended.
A/N – Wow, it hasn't been a year to get this out.
Chapter 12 – Hot Times at Hogwarts High
/Begin Book Excerpt/
Forward from 'My Friend Fawkes – A Study of Wizard-Phoenix Bonds' by Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore Copyright 1957
Shortly after receiving my Order of Merlin – First Class for my defeat and capture of the Dark Lord Grindelwald I was blessed by an event so rare that very little was known about it. It was not long after I had returned to take up the Deputy Headmaster role at Hogwarts that a most wondrous creature visited me.
I had just sat down with my favourite blend of cocoa and a lemon drops for some light reading when a flame flashed before me and a marvelous red phoenix stood in front of me. I was in awe of the magnificent bird since I had never seen one up close. The symbol of ultimate purity and light – phoenixes are reclusive and rarely show themselves to humans – either Wizard or muggle. I was stunned by the great gift given to me as I stared at the sight before me.
The phoenix, whom I later learned went by the name of Fawkes, stared at me and peered deep into my soul. I could feel his presence in my mind and it was then I realized that we had somehow established a familiar bond. It humbled me greatly that I would be chosen by a creature of such purity, good nature, and light magic that I almost fought the bond deeming myself unworthy. Fawkes somehow sensed it and trilled a calming song that made me realize I was being chosen for a higher purpose. This was not an honour that I could refuse – I was chosen as the Champion of the Light.
The next day I started to research the bond which had developed between us and quickly found that very few people had ever developed a familiar bond with a phoenix and even fewer had ever written about it. I made it a goal to search out and collect these works compiling them and a chronicle of my own experiences into the first ever published compendium of the subject.
In my quest to complete this tome I have learned many things about the bond I share and the treatment of phoenix by humans throughout the centuries. From leaders of the light whose phoenix familiars assisted them in steering the world towards the Greater Good, to the darkest of lords who enslaved phoenix in order to prolong their own wretched existences this book serves as the definitive guide to the amazing phoenix.
Albus P.W.B. Dumbledore, Order of Merlin – First Class
Headmaster, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
/End Book Excerpt/
Fawkes the Phoenix was bored. As an immortal being this was supposed to be impossible. Those who were born immortal usually had built-in coping mechanisms in their psyche that allowed them to exist throughout the millennia without going stark raving mad. There were comparatively few phoenix in existence – being immortal pretty much did everything but shutdown the drive to procreate and extend the species. All but one or two phoenix lived on a remote island in the South Pacific and spent the centuries discussing philosophy, the foibles of human kind or every once in a while just having a nice long squawk.
Fawkes however had the phoenix equivalent of ADD. Hatched sometime around the year 500, Fawkes had been bored within days after his first burning. In fact he would not have made it that far had it not been for the interesting bit of burning and being reborn for the first time. It did not take long for Fawkes to leave the nest (which was necessary since the first burning day basically immolates the nest so that the Phoenix is forced to leave) and he actually left the island by randomly flame travelling somewhere – he didn't care. His leaving had so much impact on the rest of his species that it was the main topic of discussion among the remaining phoenix for the next 300 years.
Fawkes random travel first took him to what would be later known as Central America. There he spent a couple of hundred years basking in the worship of the natives. It was a pretty easy gig – appear and disappear in flashes of flame, have the odd burning day, and eat offerings left by the people.
Whenever he got bored of being worshipped, he would fire travel around the world looking for the next great adventure. He spent some time briefly with a wizard named Godric Gryffindor, but that got old really quickly when he continually got into arguments with another wizard about the benefits of having a phoenix companion while the other bragged about the size of his snake.
Over the years Fawkes had also developed a love of practical jokes. He would flash in to witch burnings and save the people at the last second by fire travelling out with them. There was one time when he actually let a so-called dark wizard believe he bound Fawkes to him. Fawkes even put on a good show of getting depressed and even let his beautiful plumage start molting. It was all an act for the idiot's followers. Whenever they were alone, Fawkes enjoyed playing catch the Phoenix by fire-jumping all over the room setting the wizard's clothes on fire and basically doing whatever he could to mock the aspiring dark lord. The great thing was the idiot couldn't even complain to anyone about what was really happening without losing his followers. The poor wizard went insane and Fawkes finally immolated him during a burning day thus spawning the legend of the phoenix freeing itself from the "dark bonds".
The benefit of the phoenix song was another one of Fawkes' projects to help him pass the years away. He noticed that when he sang a special hypersonic note it seemed to stimulate the pleasure centre of the brain in those who had a properly varied genetic makeup. Those whose genetic history tended to a family tree with loops, multiple intersections, and the shape of a carrot tended to find that particular hypersonic note quite painful. It was wizards who made the 'light' and 'dark' interpretation of phoenix song. As for vampires, werewolves and other "dark" creatures, they had a special sensitivity to that hypersonic tone since they could actually hear it.
So after nearly one-and-a-half millennia of life, Fawkes randomly flashed into Albus Dumbledore's apartment one night. He looked at the man and using something akin to legilimency searched the thoughts of the wizard in front of him. What he found was a war hero, philosopher, teacher, and researcher who lived an alternative lifestyle. Fawkes figured it would be good a place as any other and maybe have a few laughs along the way so he decided to stick with him for a few decades and see how things went. He chuckled to himself when he realized the wizard mistook his legilimency for a familiar bond – as if an immortal being would tie itself to a mortal – so he made it his own 'in joke'.
The years went by like a flash – get it? flash? (phoenix joke) – for the phoenix and he watched as the latest in a long line of dark lords attempted to become immortal. This one used multiple horcruxes. Yeah, right. Become immortal by splitting what makes up your essence into multiple pieces and hide it all over the country. Being tied to a certain plane of existence and surviving is not the same as immortality - you just had to ask any Phoenix.
What did catch the interest of Fawkes was a young girl with an ability he had rarely seen or felt. He had just made up his mind to move on to being her companion since Phoenix could also sense what she called the Force, when said dark lord slaughtered her. Her son however would be someone to watch and if he ever became 'interesting' then Fawkes would move on to him. However at that particular moment in time being the companion of a human hatchling was not as interesting as making Dumbledore's lemon drops stick together when the old wizard wasn't looking.
Fast forward to 1994. The boy came back to the castle and he and his mate were proving to be very interesting and very powerful in the Force. They would make suitable and – most likely – fun companions. In all honesty, Dumbles was becoming a bit of a bore and he was starting to believe his own press more than anyone else. That and he never did go to any good parties. It was time for the whiskered wanker to 'lose' his phoenix familiar.
Luna started again cursing. 'That was a long interlude.' Luckily her Potions class was cancelled for the day because the Professor was indisposed and his backup – the Headmaster – had an important meeting scheduled. Who knows what might have happened when the world froze and restarted.
Harry finally calmed down had looked up at the magnificent bird perched on his chest. He sensed something that got him even more excited. He could sense Fawkes through the Force. He stared wide-eyed at the phoenix and Fawkes 'chuckled' again.
Harry glanced over at Hermione and her eyes went wide momentarily as she felt Fawkes' presence as well. She quickly got her game face back on. Harry let his childlike enthusiasm come out when dealing with and creatures – both magical and non-magical. She however, had to try and remain stone-faced while they faced the headmaster.
Albus also felt something. For the first time since Fawkes arrived he could not feel the phoenix's presence in his mind. Internally he started to panic but he too maintained his stoic appearance. Deciding it was 'twinkly-eyed grandfatherly-type' time he put on that particular appearance and chuckled.
"Mr. Potter in all the years Fawkes has been my familiar I've never known him to greet someone with such a level of enthusiasm." He addressed the phoenix, "Fawkes, can you please let Mr. Potter take a seat."
Fawkes flew up but instead of returning to his perch he flamed out of the office. Hermione helped Harry up and seeing the two single wooden chairs they looked at each other and communicated with a raised eyebrow and a wink. Before Albus could blink or move on, the two chairs had become leather recliners and the Harry and Hermione were planted in them with their feet up.
"So, Headmaster, now that the excitement is over what did you want to talk to us about?"
"There are a number of items Mr. Potter. First of all, what happened to Professor Snape this morning in Potions class? He is still in the infirmary with severe abdominal pains."
"I'm not sure what we can tell you more than we already told you when you came to the classroom.'
'"I see. Some of your classmates told me that been staring at the two of you before he collapsed. Did either or you attack him with legilimency?"
Hermione answered, "Neither of us performed legilimency on Professor Snape. We would be willing to swear a magical oath to that effect."
Dumbledore frowned, "No, I'm sure that won't be necessary. You can understand though why I would ask you after your attack on Professor Snape last night."
Harry stiffened and answered in a formal tone, "Headmaster I seem to remember I was the one attacked. Last night I used my skills in the mind arts to repel an intruder from my own mind. I would never enter the mind of another without their express permission beforehand."
"So did Professor Snape try to enter your mind again today Mr. Potter."
"No? Perhaps he wanted to probe you. Are you sure you didn't feel anything in your head?"
"Nope." Neither teen managed to suppress the involuntary shudder brought on by the thought of Snape doing anything to them that could be called probing.
Albus pondered this. If Harry didn't attack Severus or Severus didn't attack him then who was responsible for Severus' condition. This was most distressing. Until he could get answers from Severus directly he would have to try probing the minds of the fourth year Ravenclaws and Slytherins to see who had developed strong defenses.
Hermione looked at Harry and wanted to roll her eyes. For Merlin's sake - this was the leader of the light? The most powerful wizard in England? If that was truly the ace then he had a major blind spot when it came to the one and only Hermione Granger. He continually forgot her name and now seemed to discount that she could have put that slimy grease ball in the hospital matron's clutches. Maybe Dumbledore really bought into that Pureblood bullshit. She was a witch (read female) and a muggleborn. By Pureblood standards she would hardly be expected to have any magic at all. She broke herself from her own internal thoughts as Dumbledore continued.
"The next thing I need to discuss with you Mr. Potter is why you are out of uniform. As a student of Hogwarts in Ravenclaw you are expected to wear the standard uniform with your house crest."
"I'm sorry Headmaster but I'm not sure I understand you. Neither Hermione nor myself are a registered student at this institution. We are here as observers from Canada and LSCM only. We also seek to study advanced topics with some of your professors if they are willing to teach us and they have time outside of their normal classes. We also plan to spend time with the Ravenclaws and any other interested students to share some of our knowledge as well. And the clothes that I'm wearing are my standard LSCM school uniform. We were told by your Ministry of Magic that the students from the other schools would continue to wear their own uniforms while at Hogwarts." Harry spoke calmly to the Headmaster explaining a situation that he felt the old man should be already aware of.
Dumbledore put his grandfatherly face back on, "Mr. Potter, I have registered you as a fourth year student here at Hogwarts and I've sent Principal Gripple your intention to transfer."
Harry maintained his cool, "Despite the obvious ethical issues here - not to mention he lack of common courtesy - what gives you the right to do so?"
"You are a citizen of magical Britain and your legal guardians are not in the country. Since you are here as a student of Hogwarts, I can act on your guardians' behalf as your magical guardian."
"And if I refuse?"
"I'm afraid you have no choice." Dumbledore looked quite smug.
"What if I contacted Moony? He'll just come here and change it."
"The laws in Britain state that once you are enrolled at Hogwarts your guardian cannot remove you without the Headmaster's consent. It has been around to protect students from abusive relatives."
Harry shuddered, "Yeah, I know all about abusive relatives. You yourself saw to that."
Albus was about to retort that he needed to be protected when the fire flared and the last voice he wanted to hear right now asked, "Albus, are you there?"
Shaking his head slowly, Albus made his way over to the fireplace. He pasted on a fake smile, "Gilbert. What a pleasant surprise! To what do I owe this honour?"
Gripple was having none of it, "Cut the crap Albus! What is the meaning of sending illegal transfer papers for Mr. Potter?"
"Illegal Gilbert? I'm not sure I understand."
"Illegal as in not valid, void, embarrassing, and completely useless unless you've run out of toilet paper."
Albus let a bit of his temper show, "I can assure you Principal Gripple that the transfer papers are quite legal. Under British law as Harry's magical guardian I can authorize and execute the transfer."
Gilbert looked a bit too smug when a second face joined him in the fireplace saying, "You would be correct if you were actually Harry's magical guardian."
Dumbledore was taken aback, "Umm ... Remus! Well it has been a long time. Are you keeping well? You seem to have done a remarkable job raising Mr. Potter."
"As Gilbert said Albus, cut the crap. I really do not want to be here talking to you about this. However as Harry's magical guardian I can tell you that Minerva, the Grangers and I made sure that the two of them were protected from some of the ancient - and not so ancient - laws that would allow you to pull something like this. We made sure they each had a legal guardian in Britain before they came to Hogwarts for the year."
Albus paled, "And who is Harry's magical guardian?" Albus really didn't care about the girl.
Remus smirked, "Since Harry and Hermione are guests of the magical government of Britain and not enrolled in Hogwarts you have no legal need to know. It's up to them if they want to tell you because I sure as hell won't. Now if you'll excuse me I'm late for class."
The faces disappeared from the fireplace..
Albus looked over at Harry with a hopeful look on his face. He began to open his mouth to speak when Harry interrupted him, "No, we are not inclined to tell you. Is there anything else you need to speak with us about?"
Albus just shook his head. He had to get to the Ministry as soon as possible to find out who the boy's guardian was.
Without a further word, Harry and Hermione got up, changed their chairs back and just before they left the office, Fawkes flashed back on Harry's shoulder.
Albus stood dumbfounded as he saw his familiar leave on the shoulder of the boy-who-lived. He decided to have a lemon drop to calm down and discovered - much to his annoyance - that once again they were mysteriously moist and stuck together.
Harry and Hermione returned to their quarters where Hermione proceeded to transfigure one of the Ravenclaw uniforms the headmaster had sent to Harry into a very elaborate perch for Fawkes. Harry was beside himself with joy. Not only had Fawkes communicated to them that he would like to spend some time with them, but they could communicate through the Force. Fawkes had already confirmed that he had sensed Lily's presence and was amazed that she managed to establish that type of connection with the Force.
Hermione sat down next to Harry and sighed, "Well that was a waste of time and air. I would have rather gone to the DADA class and found out if a man with one leg and a fake eye would be any good."
Harry observed, "I've heard he was a senior auror. However looking at him you have to wonder how successful he was. I mean, if Dumbledore wants to deter people from actually becoming aurors he found the right poster boy. There's someone strange about him though. Any idea why he it seems like he has two magical signatures."
Hermione furrowed her brow and bit her upper lip. Harry found this to be so totally cute but she missed his look of adoration. "I know we've seen it before. There was that wizard coming out of that adult book store in Ottawa that one time."
Harry added, "Then there was the time we saw that witch coming out of the girl's quidditch locker room at school."
"There's been a few other times as well but we never had the time to follow up." Hermione smiled, "I guess we can finally research it. We'll be here until June."
They sat back on the couch holding hands and just enjoying a moment together. Both realized they only had 15 minutes or so before they had leave in order to make their meeting with Professor Flitwick.
Two hours later they headed off to dinner after a very productive meeting with the head of Ravenclaw. Filius had heard about their Potions class and relayed that the fourth year Ravenclaws were bragging to their housemates that it was the best Potions class they had experienced in all their time at Hogwarts.
He had also enthusiastically agreed to proctor them in advanced Charms studies three nights a week following dinner. He also promised to talk to the Deputy Headmistress and arrange for them to be able to use an otherwise-empty classroom for research and practice. They had also agreed to provide tutoring sessions every day for any interested Hogwarts students. Filius requested this when they had asked what he would like in return for proctoring them. Both Filius and Pomona knew some of what this pair had accomplished courtesy of Minerva. Filius was intrigued and curious to see if Harry and Hermione's different approach to Magic would make a difference in the results of the Hogwarts students who attended their sessions.
Their faces brightened as they entered the hall and saw Luna already sitting at the Ravenclaw table waiting for them. Their smiles grew wider as they noticed the younger girl beaming at them and they saw healthier food already in front of her than elsewhere in the hall.
"Hi Luna," chimed Hermione as the pair sat down. "This selection of food looks even better than yesterday."
As Hermione and Harry proceed to serve themselves and each other food on their plates, Luna replied enthusiastically, "Oh yes. After you told me about the elves I was able to call one and he took me to the kitchens. All of the elves were so helpful. They even found some of the my things that had been missing since first year."
A quick glance between Harry and Hermione confirmed that they had felt some sort of reaction from Luna when she spoke about her missing things. There was a story there but they would wait until they were in a more private location to ask Luna about it.
After dinner Harry and Hermione led Luna back to their accommodations. As they walked in they noticed Lily was waiting in the sitting room for them. It looked as though she had been 'speaking' with Fawkes. Luna seemed to take it in stride and surprised everyone when she said with childlike excitement, "Ooh, a ghost I've never met before and a Phoenix! The wrackspurts seem to be around all of you! This is going to be fun! I mean, I've never seen wrackspurts around any of the other ghosts and I've always wanted to meet a phoenix up close."
Lily looked shocked, "You can see me?"
Luna nodded her head like an overenthusiastic house elf, "Uh huh."
Silence descended on the room until Hermione cleared her throat and said, "Luna, let's sit down. I think we have more to discuss tonight than we thought."
Albus Dumbledore looked every bit the Supreme Mugwump of the Wizengamot as he strode into the Family Records section of the Ministry of Magic. He was wearing his Supreme Mugwump robes, his Supreme Mugwump hat and even the Supreme Mugwump ring that he only wore when he really wanted to dress to impress. He was determined to find out Harry Potter's current magical guardian and he felt that his 'imposing grandfather' look would do it nicely.
Unfortunately for Albus, Stella Stackhouse was the only person working the evening shift at the ministry. Stella was a first generation witch who found out that being a brilliant student meant nothing to the Ministry of Magic bureaucracy where nepotism, bribery and extortion was the name of the game. Stella was a wide-eyed graduate of Hogwarts when she found out that most of her more brain-dead classmates were getting choice positions in the Ministry where she was only offered and entry-level clerk job in the newt-to-muggle restoration section of the Muggle Affairs department. Once she started, she realized that the last time her department was needed was in 1607 when Brunhilda Bagshot turned a muggle into a newt just so she could be accused of being a witch and get the attention of a certain cute auror whose job it was to rescue witches being burned by muggles.
Stella worked hard to get out of that department and into Family Services where she seemed to plateau at the position of the sole evening shift clerk. Stella had been raised decidedly non-wizard - she had a strong work ethic, believed in earning your position in life, and lived by a strong code of ethics - that she decided to do her job precisely by the book. To add insult to injury she found some of her more idiotic classmates had better jobs in the department simply by living up to it's name. If you serviced the family of the current department head, then you were on the fast track to promotion. The family also turned out to be an equal opportunity organization.
Stella was a dreamer. She steadfastly refused to give up her nowhere job and move to Mississippi where she had some distant relatives. She was working on a project that was so secret she would not even allow herself to think about it outside of her heavily warded caravan.
One of the people she secretly hated the most in all of Magical Britain was Albus "so-bloody-full-of-his-own-crap" Dumbledore. This was the man who built up her dreams at school only to play a very big role in the organization that cut them down.
Eventually they would pay - all of them.
But that was neither here nor there right now. She had a job to do and she was going to perversely enjoy every single moment.
"May I help you?"
Albus straightened up to his full height. Gripping the edges of his robes in an oh so imperious manner he announced, "I am here to ascertain the identity of the magical guardian of one of my charges."
"Certainly sir. If you would just follow the instructions posted on the wall and fill out the appropriate form. Then you can take a number from the post over there and wait until your number is called."
Albus looked around. Aside from the two of them the room was deserted. He huffed, "As there seems to be no one here can we dispense with the formalities? I am on important business for the Wizengamot and as Supreme Mugwump my time is at a premium."
"I'm sorry but there is nothing in my standard procedures guide that provides for exemptions for the Wizengamot, Supreme Mugwump or even ..." she dumped an old, extremely thick binder in front of her raising a cloud of dust that enveloped the Headmaster. Leafing through the pages quickly, she scanned one and continued, "Well, I'll be darned I was wrong -" Albus proceeded to reclaim his smug look as be brushed the dust off his robes as she continued, " - there is an exemption here for Merlin and his heirs. Are you Merlin or one of his heirs?"
Albus tried to make the best of the situation, "Well, I don't like to brag, but I have been compared to him many times. In fact ..."
She interrupted, "So you have no documentation that you are Merlin or his direct heir."
"Not a such. No."
She slammed the binder shut covering him in dust again, "Well then, it looks like you have to fill out a form. NEXT?"
She turned away when it was confirmed that there was no one else in line. Albus grumbled and headed to fill out a form.
"Luna, we sensed you are a seer," Hermione started to say as soon as they were seated.
The younger witch stiffened, "You know? What are you going to do to me?"
Harry answered in the same gentle tone of voice he used for stressed-out magical creatures, "Luna, please don't be afraid of us. We understand your reaction. We have a very good friend back at school who is an actual seer as well. She's told us about how people with your gift are treated poorly certain countries - including this one."
Hermione continued, "It was because of our friendship with her and knowing how her magical aura was structured that we were able to sense you in the Great Hall. We want to help you and be your friends if we can. Our friend told us about how seers can be thought of as quite strange and be ostracized by their peers without ever being able to reveal their natural talents. As for right now, we scanned these quarters and removed all the listening and monitoring charms and we added our own custom security wards. Your secret is safe with us."
Luna sat for a moment with silent tears running down her face, "You ... You really mean it? You aren't going to make fun of me?"
Harry smiled warmly at her, "Why would we make fun of some one we want to have as a friend. Now we'll let you in on a big secret of ours - you are the only person outside of the two of us who we know can see Lily?"
Harry, Hermione and Lily nodded.
"Luna, I'd like you to meet Lily Potter - my Mum."
Luna was shocked still for a moment. This was getting a little bit surreal even for her.
The Supreme Mugwump of the Wizengamot had finally filled out the Request for Familial and Custodial Information form and turned to the obnoxious woman who was silently standing behind the counter. He headed back to the wicket as she said, "Now serving number 28 ... Number 28?"
Albus looked around and confirmed he was the only other person there. He walked up to the desk and presented his form.
"Are you number 28?" asked Stella as she refused to even acknowledge his form.
"I have not taken a number. As you can see I am the only person here."
"I'm sorry sir. You must take a number."
Albus sighed and went over to the post and took the next number - it was 42.
He walked back to the desk as Stella called out, "Now serving number 29 ... Number 29?"
Albus walked up to the desk again. This time he presented his form and his number.
Stella looked at him as though he was stupid, "Sir, I am currently serving number 29. This is not number 29, it is number 42."
"I am aware of that Miss. It is just that there is no one else here."
"If you are indeed the Supreme Mugwump of the Wizengamot then you should know that the Ministry of Magic runs according to set rules and procedures. In this department that includes no line jumping and waiting until your number is called. Now regulations say I must announce each number in order and give the holder of that number precisely 90 seconds to present themselves at the wicket. Please have a seat sir. If there is truly no one else here then it will only be about 20 minutes."
"Can't you see there is no one else here?"
"It certainly appears that way sir. However even a Hogwarts student knows that there are many ways to conceal your presence using Magic. Now, if you'll excuse me sir - Now serving number 30 ... Number 30?"
Albus grumbled and sat in the empty waiting room.
In the Hogwarts infirmary a greasy-haired patient finally unclenched himself and stretched his battered abdominal muscles as he tried to straighten out on the bed. As he did so, the matron walked by and glared at him. He sneered at her. With a 'harrumph' she turned and left.
To proud to ask for assistance, Severus Snape rolled out of bed and made his way to his quarters slowly and painfully. It gave him a lot of time to think and by the time he made it to his office he was sure of three things:
First - Never piss off Poppy. She had the capability to hold a grudge just as stubbornly as he did.
Second - Potter and the girl had occlumency capabilities more advanced than anything he had ever seen. He would need time to study this application of the Mind Arts thoroughly before trying to probe either of their minds again.
Third - Albus could go stuff himself if he ever ordered or even suggested Severus try to probe their minds again before he was ready. He even decided that he would not tell Albus anything about their minds - the HeadBastard could find out firsthand.
Once he got to his room, he took some pain killing potions from his private stash. They did not relieve the pain because unbeknownst to him, his pain was not merely physical - his subconscious kept regenerating the pain in his abdomen.
It was not a pretty night for the Potions Master.
Albus had almost nodded off when he heard, "Now serving Number 42 ... Number 42?"
He headed up to the counter and presented his number and completed form.
She started going through the form. "OK, Mr. ..." she squinted as she read the handwriting, "Dumbledore let me see. Hmm, so you are requesting the identity of the Magical Guardian for Harrison James Potter?"
"That is correct. It is imperative I am given this information tonight."
"Hmm, yes that's nice," she said absentmindedly as she scanned through the form. Her eyebrows went up, "Oh dear dear dear. We have a problem."
Albus was annoyed, "I assure you that I have filled out that form completely."
"That may be. However there is a section here where you have to declare your relationship to the person in question. You've left it blank. What is your relationship to Mr. Potter?"
"I am the Headmaster of Hogwarts."
"And Mr. Potter is a student?"
"No. Not yet."
"Any familial relationship to Mr. Potter?"
"I'm afraid regulations state I have to reject this application. Good day and thank you for visiting the Ministry of Magic."
Albus was desperate, "But I really need that information. It is imp..."
He was cut off by, "Now serving number 43 ... Number 43?"
Albus stood there trying to figure out how to deal with the situation when Stella solved it for him, "Excuse me sir do have number 43?"
"Then please take a number and wait to be called."
Albus shoulders slumped at this point and he walked out of the room - slouching and defeated.
Stella watched him leave and sneered. She muttered, "Old Prick," to herself as the door closed.
She smiled when she said that. She didn't know why but it gave her a warm feeling inside.
Unbeknownst to her, a Phoenix approved of her actions tonight.
A/N – I meant to have this out sooner but life conspired against me. The only good thing I can say is that if it was not for my new iPad and it's portability, I would have never been able to get this done with all the time I've spent in hospital waiting rooms lately. Next up – Contracts Chapter 7