Mind Over Matter

A/n: Okay so I know this was the longest wait for a chapter in a long while, sorry about that one guys. I have lots of stuff going on in my life at the moment (including not having internet access at my home so I have to go to town to use wifi) but don't worry, I'm still writing and totally not abandoning this fic.

There's some shifting between tenses in this chapter, I was feeling the different styles out. If it's hard to follow let me know and I'll edit it but I believe it shouldn't be too problematic.

Anywho, now that I've gotten a bit settled it shouldn't take quite this long again.

Side note- if anyone ever wonders about my progress on a chapter, check out my profile. I generally update what's going on and such there if an update takes a while.

Enjoy & Thanks for putting up with my shit.

Chapter Twenty-Two

Time is Fluid

In retrospect Harry should have figured that everything would end up going ass over elbows. It had been too easy to get the captives out of the Manor, especially given the relatively small size of the two groups the Order had sent in to do the job.

Still, once the teenagers, Filch and Olivander hit the forest, he had figured – stupidly, perhaps- that everything was going to go smoothly. When he had doubled back to make sure the fighting force had managed to get out of there alright, he had been surprised to find them losing. Badly.

The eight-wizard team that was given the task of creating the distraction were being overwhelmed by a large force of Death Eaters, more than should have been in the Manor considering the takeover of Hogwarts. Harry began to suspect that this had been a trap the dark wizards had hidden right under his nose, and that maybe his cover was finally blown after the last year he'd spent under the radar.

With skills perfected over the last twenty years of nothing but training and preparations and use, Harry threw himself into the bedlam. Everywhere around him Order members were being pushed back, fighting with everything they had as they tried to create a break in the throng to allow them to escape back to headquarters. The Death Eaters were not giving an inch.

A sickly green curse, much duller in color from the Killing Curse, flew by Harry's head. He had only a few seconds' warning to dodge, but it was enough. He zeroed in on the Death Eater responsible and threw a vicious stinging hex. His power had magnified through the years and caused the spell to be so strong that lacerations started breaking out all over the dark wizard's body, blood gushing from the wounds.

"Narcissa?!" Someone asked, incredulously. "What are you doing?!"

Harry stopped as Alecto Carrow step into his field of vision, mask off and expression thunderous. Her wand was held high in front of her, offensively.

"I knew it! You're a no-good mudblood sympathizer! I told them! I told them!" She cried. Several Death Eaters nearby stilled their actions to watch, sure that the others had control of the Order team.

"Alecto." Harry greeted tightly, voice high and feminine under his disguise. "Stand down."

"You're not my leader, you don't command me." She said snidely, eyebrows raised high. Harry smiled.

"I'm not giving you an order, I'm giving you advice." He told her, flicking his wand sightly to draw her vision to it. "Do you want to find out what happened to Amycus?"

"You!" Alecto thundered, drawing more attention, "You killed my brother!"

"Your brother shouldn't have meddled in affairs that didn't concern him."

"I knew you were a traitor, Narcissa. Amycus knew it too."

"And look where it got him." Harry replied, apathetic.

"I'll kill you!" Alecto screamed, "Avada Kedavra!"

Harry dropped to the floor within seconds, the curse passing just inches over his head. Before Alecto could even blink and register that she had missed, Harry had her stunned and bound with magical rope. He peered down at her for a moment, taking in the absolute fury in her eyes before he moved on to the next person.

He was too busy focusing on the battle around him to realize that his disguise was slowly fading away, revealing his features slowly and shedding those of Narcissa Malfoy. It wasn't until he caught Ron's eye across the fray and the redhead gave him a startled look that he figured out what was happening.

He hoped that the sudden appearance of a twenty years older Harry Potter wasn't going to cause the Order members to falter and make any mistakes in this battle – those that hadn't already known – and that it would do so for their enemies. Harry engaged and subdued two more Death Eaters who came at him before he turned, his back to the wall, and he surveyed the room.

Hermione and Ron were sticking close to one another near the main entrance and fighting a couple of dark wizards. They seemed to be holding their own alright, and Harry wasn't concerned that they would freak out over his identity considering he'd warned them days ago that this might happen – and, consequently, that his younger self would be leaving, which was for the best in the long run considering how much extra time he'd gained to prepare for this war. Sure, it had been a lonely twenty years, but he'd grown up being accustomed to sacrifice.

Moody was near to Snape, both of whom were protecting an injured Katie Bell (A last minute recruit to this mission, just newly minted into the Order). Fred and George were close to the grand staircase which had a mass of maybe five Death Eaters scattered on it. Harry was mildly surprised he had yet to see Lucius, self proclaimed King of the Manor. There was no way the man wasn't home, nor that he hadn't heard all of this commotion from what Harry called his 'throne room' way up on the third floor of the house. The arrogant prick had wards and alarms all over the place- a person would be hard pressed to fart on the property without him knowing about it.

There was a quick flash of concern when Harry realized that he hadn't spotted Remus anywhere. He knew the man was supposed to be here. Fighting his way through the battling wizards, Harry sidled up to Hermione and Ron just as the redhead knocked an enemy out cold with a stunner.

"Harry. So it's happened?" Hermione questioned, keeping her eyes on the adversaries before them. The trio stood with their backs to the wall, keeping watch on all sides. Harry nodded, realized Hermione couldn't see the action and spoke.

"Yeah. An hour ago, just about." Harry bent forward a little to shoot a hex at a wayward Death Eater, whose back was turned. Ron seemed a tad grim at the news.

"This is going to take some getting used to, you know?" Ron asked after they reached a break in opponents. The other Order members were still being kept busy but for now the trio were left to themselves.

"I imagine it will." Harry replied, wiping sweat from his brow with the back of his hand. "There will be time for all of that later, though. We need to get out of here. Where's Remus?"

"Oh, uh..." The redhead started reluctantly, expression guilty, "He chased after Lucius."

"What?!" The man thundered, eyeing his best friends incredulously.

"Lucius was here for a bit but ran off when Remus managed to land a pretty bad slashing hex on him. They went that way about thirty minutes ago." Hermione supplied, pointing down a dimly lit hall that ran parallel to the staircase. Harry groaned.

"Why does nothing ever go smoothly?" He snapped, taking off in the direction indicated. Seriously, if anything ever deigned to go according to plan Harry would probably have a heart attack at the age of thirty-nine.

The hall was lit by torches, magicked to stay aflame unless otherwise directed. They were scattered sparsely along the marbled walls, giving the hallway a dim, gloomy atmosphere. There were no doors on either side as Harry made his way down, the only purpose this hallway served was to intimidate any who were meeting Lucius, as the sitting room he took all meetings in was directly at the end.

Really, for all of his high-and-mighty bullshit, Lucius Malfoy was mostly just show. There were several occasions over Harry's years undercover- pretending to be whatever Death Eater had defected, turned themselves in to the Order for protection in exchange for information- where he'd watched the eldest Malfoy lose terribly to the most feeble-wanded. It really was only his title and name that led to him being so feared and respected among the general public. The man was a damn joke.

It wasn't surprising at all to find that Lucius was hiding behind his goons, the elders Cabbe and Goyle, both equally as dimwitted and brutish as their sons. The two were squaring off in an unfair duel against Remus, though the latter didn't seem the least intimidated by his current situation. A yellow toned hex flew across the room, hitting Crabbe's wand arm and mangling it horribly as Harry approached the door, though the green-eyed man was more preoccupied with the sudden influx of rage over his mate being outnumbered than to actually care to name the spell.

Crabbe cried out in pain, dropping his wand, as Goyle shot Crucio at Remus who dodged. Lucius was lifting his wand as if to strike and Harry saw red. None of the room's occupants had noticed his arrival, nor the swift change his body made as he shifted into a massive wolf. Within seconds of the shift, Harry leaped across the room and slammed all of his body weight into Lucius, knocking the blonde into the wall and shocking him so thoroughly that he dropped his wand.

Lucius stared at Harry with wide, fearful eyes, hands raising up in front of his face as if to defend himself though it would do no good. Harry snarled, body vibrating with a dangerous growl. The man pinned under him started babbling, pleading for his life while he struggled to get free. Harry wasn't going to let that happen though, his coherent thoughts were reduced to pure instinct in this form and the only words that went through his mind were a repeated mantra of mate, protect, danger, kill.

It really didn't help his instincts that the scent of his mate was so much more potent in his wolf form, that smell that had been absent for twenty years and was now surrounding him, filling his senses and overwhelming what was left of his rational mind. The smell of the sniveling man below him was frightened, sickeningly panicked and filled with the rotten undertones of evil. This man was not a good man, this man had tried to harm his mate, this man needed to die.

Harry reared his head back, jaws opening wide to reveal rows of deadly sharp teeth as he prepared to end the life of the pathetic wizard who had dared to harm what was his. He was so lost to his instincts that he didn't sense the magic flying at him and was taken by momentary surprise when pain exploded in his side, knocking him over. He whimpered, huffed in a deep breath and smelled the coppery tang of blood in the air.

His fur was quickly being dampened with blood from where the spell had hit him. It wasn't a wound that would kill him in his current state, but it was enough to slow him down. Movement caught his attention and he turned to find Goyle rushing toward him, wand raised threateningly. Harry bared his teeth, a warning that went unheeded. The overweight man started to shout out a curse, only to be unceremoniously flung across the room by an unseen force. Harry's ears flattened, eyes drawn across the room to Remus who was standing stock-still. He was staring at Harry as if he'd grown a new head, or... yeah, turned into a giant wolf. Right.

Remus looked very pale, but otherwise perfectly whole and not harmed. That caused the raging instincts to calm down and Harry was able to begin thinking clearly. He struggled up onto all fours, turning his attention to Lucius who was attempting to make a hasty departure from the room. The man was almost to the door when Harry let loose another growl, causing Lucius to start and stumble over Crabbe's stunned body on the floor. This all seemed to snap Remus out of the trance he'd been in and he fell into action, paralyzing Lucius and checking to make sure Goyle and Crabbe were still sufficiently subdued. Goyle was bleeding from a gash on his head that he'd gained when he had slammed into the floor.

Done with his task, Remus looked back over at Harry as he pawed slowly over to the men to make his own check on their threat level. Satisfied that all three were no longer a danger, he sat back and inspected his wound, aware that Remus had not stopped gaping at him. Fuck but the injury was going to be a lot more painful when he shifted back to his human body. Wounds were always so much worse than they appeared when he was a wolf.

Harry stilled when he felt fingers hesitantly touching his head. He turned his gaze and watched as Remus regarded him, several different emotions crossing his features. Confusion, worry, recognition. Of course Remus knew who he was though, Harry was his mate. Even though he'd taken measures to dull the bond between them, so nothing would be revealed while the younger Harry was still here, it was still there in its basic sense. Now that the potion was no longer masking him under the guise of Narcissa Malfoy, hiding his features as well as his scent, it was well and truly obvious to Remus who he was looking at.

It was as Remus was opening his mouth, likely to ask what the hell was going on, that Hermione and Ron rushed in. Hermione's hair was sticking up oddly in certain areas, the tips singed. Ron's shirt was torn and a dab of blood was crusted on his cheek. Both looked breathless and worn out, but thankfully alive and mostly uninjured. Hermione took one look at Harry and gaped, eyes wide.

"Harry? Is that you?" She asked, walking cautiously toward him. He lowered his head, tried to show her he wouldn't harm her, but he didn't think she understood. She stopped a few feet away, peering at him.

"You never told us you were this huge." Ron piped in, "This is kind of awesome!"

"Hush, Ron." Hermione chided, eyes worried. "Are you injured Harry?"

Remus, meanwhile, had withdrawn from the group and taken several steps away. Harry wondered if Ron and Hermione were even aware that he was there. Deciding that there was no easy way to go about it, Harry allowed his body to turn back to its human form. He was kneeling now, hand moving and pressing hard against his ribcage where the curse had hit him. His memory was a tad fuzzy on the exact details of everything that had just happened, but that was normal after he'd changed. Ron flushed bright red and turned away from the image of his now human and very naked best friend.

Harry might have been a bit more embarrassed over his state of undress if he wasn't too busy trying to fight against the mind melting pain that had exploded from the wound shortly after he turned. He flinched when he felt robes thrown over his shoulder, only to realize that it was Remus covering him. Hermione frowned, concerned and leaned down to offer him a potion from the satchel she carried.

Harry gave her a thankful look as he downed what he identified as a pain numbing potion, which took effect quickly and he breathed in relief.

"We need to go." Remus finally spoke, tone odd. Harry supposed it would be a lot to take in, seeing his mate as a grown man rather than the teenager he had last seen only hours previously.

Remus felt like he was missing something here. He did not like that feeling, he'd always been sharp and caught onto things much more quickly than others. Still, the easy way Hermione and Ron had interacted with Harry- this older Harry, who had come out of nowhere and Remus still hadn't been gifted with an explanation for it- seemed familiar and not at all shocked. So it stood to reason that the two had been made aware of this before now.

He had a lot of questions, too many to pin down just one. Why was Harry now so much older? Was this his- no, not mine- Harry or some future one who had somehow traveled through time as Remus had once done? How? Why was he here if that was the case? Why hadn't Remus seen him before now? Why could he shift into a wolf without a full moon? What in the blazes is going on?

But Remus asked none of these questions. He remained silent as he followed the three others on their trek from the abandoned hut they'd apparated to, across a sleepy little muggle town to an Order supporting pub that hosted the fireplace that would take them closer to Grimauld.

Harry was walking with a slight limp, favoring the side that had been injured. Hermione was talking to him quietly and occasionally he would nod his head, but otherwise the walk was rather uneventful. Remus kept waiting for the next surprise to leap out at him- there seemed to be no end to them where the man was concerned.

Remus had been surprised when he'd caught sight of the massive black wolf tackling Lucius Malfoy. At first he'd considered whether or not it was another werewolf with the same power as Greyback, but then the scent had hit him and he'd thought for sure he was losing what was left of his mind. No way could what his nose was telling his brain be true.

But then he'd seen those eyes, and there was no way it could be anyone else.

When Goyle had thrown the curse at Harry and hit him, Remus had been filled with an uncontrollable anger that was frightening. He'd thrown everything he had into the spell that had thrown Goyle into the wall, enough force behind it to break bones. Remus knew it was an instinct, the bond telling him to protect his mate. Mate. That was a word that still felt very sudden to him. He may have mated when he was a teenager, but he'd spent all of his life without that knowledge. Now he remembered it and everything that had happened and it was a struggle to justify those memories, memories that didn't fit in with the rest. Memories he hadn't known he'd had to lose.

He was tired, worn out, strained from the seemingly unending barrage of new events and surprises. All Remus really wanted to do right then was get an explanation for this adult Harry, then bury himself in a chocolate, liquor, or sleep induced coma. Maybe a bit of all three.

Marauder Era

The light was bright, white, and utterly blinding. It filled every corner, chasing away all shadows until the purity of light was such a degree of brilliance that all four of the teenagers scattered in a circle in the room had to snap their eyes closed, throw their hands over them in protection. The book hadn't mentioned this ritual possibly blinding its castors, for the love of Merlin!

"James!" Lily's voice rang out, commanding. She'd been running the majority of the ritual, something to due with not wanting the 'dunderheads' to muck it up when it counts. Sirius thought she just got off on ordering James around, really.

"To one who is lost, who cannot be found," James began the chant with confidence, apparently not deterred by the fact that all of their eyes were burning out of their skulls with the intensity of the light. Sirius may be being melodramatic, but he didn't care.

"We reach out with our magic, spinning the link around," Lily chanted.

"Through time, space, air or ground," Sirius said with about as much seriousness as you could expect of him. Which is to say that there were wild arm flailing gestures and over-the-top intonations. He figured he might as well make this interesting.

"Hear our voices and respond to the sound." Peter managed, stunning Sirius with his lack of mistake.

"Return here our friend, return now entirely and whole, to this place bound." Lily finished without flair, Sirius figuring she'd missed a pretty good opportunity there. He didn't have much more time to muse over the absurdity of it all as the moment the girl finished the chant a sound as loud as thunder echoed throughout the room.

The light began to morph into a gray, swirling mist that strongly resembled a portal. Sirius cracked his eyes cautiously, making sure he wasn't going to go blind, before he caught sight of the manifestation and his jaw dropped.

Wind gushed through the room as if the portal its self were the turbine creating it. In the center of the mass of gray, cloudy swirls a black circle began to appear. Sirius noted absently out of the edge of his vision that Peter had began to back away from the thing.

"Don't!" Lily snapped, "You'll break the circle and end this. Stay in your place!"

When the teenager didn't listen and continued to back away, James waved his wand and stuck him to the floor with a muttered spell. The black circle continued to grow larger and a form stared to emerge from it. A few moments went by as legs, torso, arms manifested from the portal slowly.

A couple seconds later and with one final sound, the wind died down and the swirly thing disappeared entirely. The room looked like nothing had happened, there weren't even lingering traces of magic in the air to tip off anyone that something had occurred here. All that was left was the form of Remus laying unconscious on the stone floor.

Harry fell. He didn't know how far or at what distance, the only thing that filled his senses was the achingly loud sound of a thunderclap. His body hit the grass with force and he heard a popping noise, though he wasn't able to feel much of his body to know whether or not the sound was from injury.

He landed on his back, starring up at rain clouds that were letting out a torrential downpour. Harry barely felt the water on his face. A bolt of lightning streaked across the sky and the teenager frowned, mind fuzzy but clearing. It hadn't been raining before. The weather was supposed to be absolutely clear skies tonight, the Order had made sure of that before deciding on the raid. Where did these clouds come from? This doesn't make sense.

Lifting with a groan, beginning to feel the aches in his body from both the raid and the subsequent crash landing, Harry swiped rain water off his face in a futile attempt to get his bearings. He looked around and found himself to still be in the forest that edged the Malfoy Manor. That didn't alarm him, what did was that he was completely alone and there were no signs of a fight. Trees should be splintered and burned from the errant spells that had hit them, but instead everything was pristine and whole as if nothing had happened here. In fact, the only sounds Harry could clearly detect were the rain and the grumbling thunder in the distance. There was something the matter with all of this and it was sending a feeling of panic straight up Harry's spine.

Standing, Harry moved cautiously through the trees back in the direction of the Manor, his wand drawn. He slipped silently through the forest, coming to a stop at the tree line and peering around a conifer to study the sight of the Manor before him.

There weren't any witches or wizards in sight- no Order members, no Death Eaters, no one. The picture window that Narcissa had blown to hell was fully intact, a glow lighting up the room within the study as if it were in use. There was no sign at all that there had been a battle here.

What the hell is going on? Harry thought, trying to remain calm. Okay, take a breath there. So no one's here and this is really effing weird- follow procedure. Get back to Grimauld.

With a plan in mind, Harry turned and disapparated. He arrived in Diagon Alley, intent to make his way to the twin's joke shop in order to make use of their floo like before, but once he arrived his feeling of unease began to grow.

It started out small- a book store he'd never noticed before, an abandoned shop that he could have sworn had been open and thriving last he'd checked. Olivander's seemed... newer, somehow, more polished and less gritty. All of these things were easy enough to shrug off, Diagon Alley was always changing to suit the needs of the shoppers.

As Harry neared the road that would veer off from the main walkway and lead him to the joke shop, he caught sight of an abandoned newspaper blowing in the wind from the storm. He continued on and in moments was approaching the location of the shop- only... it was gone.

Not gone, but as if it had never been there to begin with. There was nothing, just an empty lot and a for purchase or lease sign standing alone on the plot.

With his panic finally exploding into fully formed fear, Harry gaped and began to shake. What the bloody fuck is going on?!

The newspaper he'd spied minutes ago floated past him, blew into the sales sign and became pinned there by the wind. Nervous, shaky, fearful, Harry approached and pulled it free. He straightened out the wet pages and peered down at the headline and publication date.

Oh... oh no.

Present Day

"Azkaban and several other wizarding prisons have been raided by the Dark Lord's followers. Every Death Eater previously arrested and sentenced has escaped, while those who were imprisoned for other crimes and refused to join the Dark Lord were killed on the spot. Only two guards managed to escape the mayhem, members of the Order both." Lee Jordan's voice crackled through the static of the radio of Grimauld Place, "The dementors who weren't already on He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named's side have now fled the abandoned prison and it is assumed have migrated to his side. Order sympathizers and members are continuing to be captured and, most likely, killed. These are hard, desperate times and things are only growing steadily worse. A last word- this is important- a jynx has been placed on the Dark Lord's name. Do not say it unless you want a horde of Death Eaters to come after you- use caution at all times, unless you're under some seriously powerful concealing wards you should assume you are under constant watch. Until next time, stay safe people and never lose hope."

Tap, tap, tap.

"This is insane. Do you realize how bonkers all of this sounds?" Tonks exclaims.

Tap, tap, tap.

"Well, I knew all of this straight off. Polyjuice potion may be able to fool most things, but it can't fool me. It's like I always say-"

"If the word vigilance comes out of your trap, so help me I'll-"

Tap, tap, tap.

"Would you kindly just be quiet for the love of Merlin?!" Remus shouts, irritated. "Stop arguing! And you," he points at Harry, "Stop tapping your fingers incessantly."

"Well there's only so many times I can tell this story before it begins to grow boring." Harry replies in his defense, stifling the urge to tap his fingers on the table top once again.

"I have yet to find a singular thing regarding you anything but boring." Snape retorts.

"Really, Severus?" Harry asks with a tilt at the edge of his mouth, smirk well on its way. "I was the Boy-Who-Lived and you, you were the Boy-Who-Was-Allergic-to-Chocolate. No wonder you're an asshole."

Sirius barks out a laugh, slapping his hands down on the table as he does so. McGonagall sits with a severe expression on her face, arms crossed over her chest to show her displeasure at the lack of maturity being displayed at the table. Dumbledore is quiet as he takes in everything that has happened, though the news about this new adult Harry is not anything he hadn't already known- the Headmaster had been one of the first people that Harry had contacted when that damn time spell had dragged him back along with the younger Remus.

"I'm sorry," Kingsley interrupts the banter with a confused expression, "But for clarification's sake... that blond boy who's been running around here was actually Professor Lupin as a teenager under a glamour, and this guy is Harry Potter as an adult, and the younger Harry was pulled into the past with the younger Professor Lupin, but now this one is here? I'm... I think- I need time to digest all this."

"It is a lot of information to take in all at once." Harry concedes with a nod, fully ignoring the glare Snape is shooting at him. "I've been working with the Order behind the curtain for nearly nineteen years now. I've been around one way or another all that time."

"So you might have been right in front of us and we'd have never even known?" Tonks questions with a raised brow. Harry grins.

"Oh yeah, several times. I was Toby Nells for a while, Andrea Morgan, Jack Finn, Narcissa Malfoy. I've been in and out of this house too many times to name them all."

"Wait, was it you that was writing us all of those letters from 'a friend'?" She asks.


"You could of killed us on that mission at Riddle Manor!" Tonks explodes, jabbing a finger in Harry's direction, "Just what the hell were you doing?"

"I was testing- myself. I wanted to see if everything I remembered had still happened, including the training with Moody." Harry replies, "I am sorry that I ended up hurting a few of you."

"How did you even know all that stuff about Horcruxes?" Wood asks.

"I've had nineteen years to research the subject." Harry responds, tone flat. The extent of those nineteen years and all of the things he'd experienced and had to do were not something he particularly wanted to discuss now- if ever.

"That knowledge has and will continue to be of great help to us in this war. It is where a lot of my knowledge on the subject was born." Dumbledore says, "While I know that this is a lot for all of you to take in tonight, I ask that you not overwhelm Harry with questions. Let him get settled in and keep your focus on the war ahead of us."

"Right. I need to be getting back to the others in any case. I'll see you all again in a few days." Kingsley says as he stands, straightens his robes around his shoulders and bids them all a farewell. Harry starts tapping his fingers again, anxious to get out of this room with all of these people. He's too used to operating under the radar nowadays to be entirely comfortable with so many people focused on him now.

Tap, tap, tap- Remus glares. Harry ignores it. Ron snorts. Hermione huffs.

"Albus, can I just- I mean, we can't leave Harry in the past. That's not an option, he doesn't belong there." Molly says as several more Order members file out of the room.

"I'm afraid at this time we don't have any other option." Is all Dumbledore says in response.

Harry and he had already been over this topic, it's a conundrum in a way. Adult Harry has far more skill and knowledge, but teenage Harry shouldn't be stuck in a time he doesn't belong in, but adult Harry is vastly more useful in regards to the war, but teenage Harry could learn, but they may not have the time to teach, et cetera. It's a never-ending loop, one which the old wizard has left entirely up to Harry to make a decision on. It doesn't help much that his fate is unknown should they bring back the teenager instead of letting him live out those twenty years.

And really it's not like those twenty years were all that bad- he'd managed to get to know his parents before they died, an experience that he wouldn't trade for anything. Lily had been witty and smart and compassionate, James had been brave and funny and loyal. It was knowing them in and of its self that mostly convinced him that he should just leave the teenager to tough it out as he had.

Coming out of his thoughts Harry realizes that Remus is staring at him, which isn't really new since the man had been doing that a lot after Harry had revealed himself at the Manor. Meeting the look, deciding to be cheeky, Harry winks at his mate. Remus starts a little and looks away.

The emerald-eyed man wonders if things are always going to be so tense and uncomfortable between them. He remembers clearly what it had been like when they were teenagers, remembers their first kiss and all of the private moments between them and that one night when they'd had sex, fumbling and new as it had been. It's not like Harry doesn't understand on a basic level how weird this is for Remus, but it still stings a little that the man seems to be quite a bit less affected by their bond than he is.

"Make sure to catch Fred, George and Lee's radio broadcasts so that you can remain informed about everything that's happening out there," Moody is saying to everyone at large as he prepares to depart, "In a couple of days we'll meet to go over the plans for getting the Sword- which, I'm assuming, you'll now be taking over for the other you?"

Harry realizes that Moody is talking to him and nods in affirmation. Moody continues speaking, now standing, "Right then, good. I suggest restocking on any potions you're in need of and continuing to train daily to keep your skills sharp. Until next time, good evening."

The man hobbles out of the room without flourish. Snape vacates soon after and makes his way to the cellar once again, McGonagall and Dumbledore say their farewells and leave as well. Remus takes a look around the room before quietly excusing himself and exiting. Hermione, Ron, Harry and Sirius are soon the only remaining occupants of the room. Harry stares at the door with a frown.

"Well," Sirius says, drawing out the word, "How about a drink?"

A/n: Erm, this chapter is subject to editing as I'm not completely confident I caught all of my possible mistakes. If you catch any feel more than free to let me know.

So, were you guys surprised about the events of this chapter? Did any of you guess? What do you think might happen from here on? I'm really interested in your opinions, I've been planning this for the last eight chapters and couldn't wait for the reveal. :)

Plot starts to really kick in next chapter and there will likely be about four chapters left of this story. I'll be sad to see it go. As always, thanks for reading and remember to review!