After the blood brother ritual that Harry and Neville went through, Augusta was happy to let Neville go to Potter Manor to train with Harry.
Remus had taught them how to fight with broadswords in the past-future, but this time Sirius would be the one teaching them, for the most part.
"What?" Sirius said with a whine when Harry stared at him in shock after being told this. "All pureblood males learn to sword fight, just ask Draco."
"It's true," Draco said, nodding. "Have fun with your little lesson," he added, standing up from the kitchen table before leaving the room.
Harry held back a snicker as he remembered Draco's first morning at Potter Manor.
Draco climbed out of bed his first morning at Potter Manor, and yawned widely. He climbed out of bed, smoothing his black satin pajamas as he went, then slipped on his green bedroom slippers and walked to the window and threw open the drapes. He breathed deeply before yawning again then walked into his bathroom.
His eyes narrowed in annoyance when he saw that neither of the two house-elves had drawn his morning bath. He huffed in annoyance before doing it himself.
Draco tried lifting the handle to turn on the water, but it just wouldn't work. He tugged harder, but it still wouldn't work. So he stepped inside the tub, braced his feet firmly, and tugged as hard as he could on the handle. It. Just. Wouldn't. Work. His arms just didn't want to pull anymore so he fell forward, putting pressure on the handle instead. To his shock, the handle pushed down, and water began gushing out of the spigot right onto his slippers and the hems of his pants.
"Aargh!" he yelled in frustration, kicking the side of the tub in anger and stubbing his toe.
He climbed out of the tub and kick off his sodden slippers before adding a scoopful of scented crystals to the hot water. He paused, then added another scoop just to be sure there was enough, then left the room.
He went into his walk-in closet, thank goodness they had the decency to give him one, imagine only having a tiny wardrobe for his clothes. His satin dress robes would be crushed! He pulled out a long black robe, emerald green satin shirt with ivory buttons, and pressed black slacks. He walked to his dresser, clothes draped over one arm, and removed a pair of black satin boxers, and a pair of silk knit socks, also black.
Draco re-entered the bathroom, and hung up his clothes on the hook on the back of the door and placing his boxers and socks on the counter by the sink.
He stripped out of his pajamas, dropping each piece on the floor, and put his right foot into the tub, only to yank it out immediately, because the water was scalding hot. He let out a few choice cuss words at this, before draining half of the water, and adding some cold water to get it to the correct temperature.
Then he realized that he should probably add some more bath crystals to the water since he drained half of it, and added two more scoops.
He climbed into the tub and relaxed. It was the perfect temperature. He stayed in the tub until his fingers began to prune, then got out and drained the water. He pulled a fluffy white towel off of the rack and frowned in annoyance, thinking, 'Dear Merlin, is Potter a barbarian! It's just shameful, not having the guest's towels properly heated when they need them!'
He toweled dry before dressing and going about the rest of his morning ablutions. He washed his face. Was that a zit beside his nose? No. No. It was just his imagination.
'How much hair gel does Bibby normally use in my hair? Eh, well, I'll just use it until I think it looks right.' He poured a long squirt of the gel into his palm, and ran a hand through the hair on the left side only to find that he didn't have enough left in his hand for his right side. He poured another long squirt into his hand and did the other side. But now it looked like too much, so he desperately tried spreading it around more evenly, only to make his hair stick up funny, much to his frustration. He tried franticly to smooth it down for the next ten minutes, only to give up in frustration.
Draco sighed, and decided that fixing it could wait until after breakfast. He went downstairs and began to search for the dining room. Twenty minutes later, he finally found it, but it was empty, so he sat down to wait for the house-elves to deliver his breakfast.
He waited, and he waited. And he waited some more. Finally, he was sick of waiting, so stood up and left the room.
Entering the hall, he could smell something wonderful so followed the scent until he entered, he gasped loudly, the kitchen. To his astonishment, Harry was calmly eating a plate of eggs, toast and bacon, while reading a Defense book that Remus had loaned him. Remus and Sirius were fighting over who got the last waffle, though it looked like Remus was winning, simply because he was more awake than Sirius.
Draco just stood there in shock.
"Aren't you going to come in and get some food?" Harry asked when he finally looked up from his book. "By the way, did you know that you smell like a perfume store that just exploded?" he added, wrinkling his nose.
"You eat in the kitchen?" Draco asked incredulously, ignoring the comment about his smell, and muttering about how uncivilized it was.
"Obviously," Harry replied dryly.
Draco pulled out a chair, and brushed the seat before sitting delicately perched on the edge, as though he was afraid to soil his robes by sitting there.
"Would you prefer tea or coffee?" Remus asked kindly, while Sirius tried to steal the waffle from the werewolf's plate, only to jump when Remus slammed his fork down, piercing the waffle, and leveled a glare at his friend.
"Tea," Draco said, sniffing haughtily. "Mother says that coffee isn't dignified, and only the unsoiled masses drink it."
Harry snorted loudly, before bursting into laughter, tears trickling from the corners of his eyes.
Remus just shook his head and poured a cup of tea, handing it to the haughty boy.
Draco took a delicate sip before cringing and adding some cream and two teaspoons of sugar, muttering about sugar cubes being more refined. A plate of eggs, toast and bacon, like Harry was eating, was placed in front of him, making him frown.
"I wanted Eggs Benedict this morning," Draco said, sneering at the plate of food.
Tibby was about to rush off and make some, when Harry's hand landed on her shoulder, stopping her. He silently shook his head, and Tibby nodded, acknowledging the order, and went to wash dishes instead.
"I don't know how you were raised, Draco," Harry said, standing and leaning over the table, hands braced on the edge. "But in this house, we eat what is served without complaints, and we thank the cook. I don't give a damn about what you want. You have food and a place to live, and you didn't have to pay a Knut for it, so you should be darned grateful. We aren't asking you to do chores, but if you keep up your spoiled little prince attitude, that will change. All we ask is that you are polite to the beings that actually do work, and try not to make more work for them. That said, you will either eat what is provided or go hungry. You will put dirty clothes in the laundry bin or they will sit on the floor until they grow legs and walk off on their own. You will not go into the Potions lab or anyone's private quarters without permission, and lastly, you will refrain from making comments about how unrefined we are. Have I made myself perfectly clear?" Harry asked, eyes glowing ominously.
Draco gulped, scooting back from him in fear. "Yes," he squeaked.
"Good, then I won't have to repeat myself," Harry said, sitting back down, only to find that Sirius had stolen his book.
Harry was thankful that the other boy no longer acted the way he had that first morning. Neville, on the other hand, had no problems with eating in the kitchen, preferring it as it was more casual than what he was used to.
Sirius led Remus, Neville and Harry into the dueling room. "We'll start with the epees, and move our way onto the heavier swords once you're used to these," he said. "They're the ones on this rack." He stood next to a rack full of long slender swords.
"Fencing," Sirius began, "cannot be properly learned in just a few weeks. It takes dedication, perseverance, and improvement tends to be slow and steady. Eventually, you will both get to the point where every movement flows. I expect that failure will be common during the next few weeks, but I don't want either of you to stop trying, just because it's hard to learn. I want you both to be stubborn! And persevere through the pain and frustration!" Sirius snapped. "You must come here every morning prepared to learn, if you aren't, then you will fail! You must learn to control your tempers. If you lose your temper, then you will lose your fight!"
Harry gulped silently. Sirius was intent, and focused. He was never that way normally.
"To that end, we will be teaching you meditation techniques, which are also the basis of Occlumency and several types of martial arts. You must be confident, but not arrogant!" Sirius continued, "You must be flexible, so you will be stretching before and after every session. You must be graceful, so Augusta will be coming here every afternoon to give you dance lessons."
Both boys gulped nervously.
"You will be jogging, doing jumping jacks, pushups, stomach crunches, and jumping and trying to catch your knees against your chest before hitting the ground. Outside of this room I am friendly and fun, but in here I am your worst enemy! You will hate me! When you are back at school, you will continue with your practice even if I have to sneak in there and shock you awake every morning to do it! Are we clear?"
"Yes, sir!" both boys shouted out like Privates in the Military who just received orders from an officer.
"Good," Sirius said smugly, "Then let's get started. We will start with meditiation," Sirius said, sitting cross-legged on a mat in the center of the room. "Boys, I want one of you on each side of me, and Remus across from me, so we are sitting in a circle." Once they were seated, he continued, "Now, meditation when taught is usually the act of emptying your mind completely, but I don't approve of that. It is easier for Darkness to control an empty mind than a full one. Dementors, for example, take advantage of the emptiness to fill it with all your worst memories. An accomplished Legilimens will fill it with whatever memories of yours that they want to see, or what they want you to see. If that occurs, the only way to stop them is to regain control of your mind, and only the mentally stronger of you will succeed. Therefore, I will be teaching you meditation where you select something to meditate on. It will keep your mind filled, and help you to focus. It will also give you better mental control, helping you with fending off Legilimens and Dementors, and controlling your tempers."
Sirius smiled at them. "Often when you focus on a specific subject to meditate on, you learn something. Meditation means continued or extended thought, reflection, or contemplation. In the definition it says nothing about clearing your mind of all thought. So I want you to focus on something, anything. It could be something you learned in school, or something you read. I want you to focus on it, and when other things come up relating to it, ponder them too. We will be doing this for one hour."
- - -
In the Potter Manor Ballroom, Augusta gazed at the two boys in front of her before beginning a speech rather reminiscent of Sirius' about fencing. "Waltzing is a romantic, elegant dance. It is not jarring like the polka, or seductive like the tango. It isn't as casual as the rhumba, as," she wrinkled her nose, "loose as the merengue, or as dramatic as the mambo. Waltzing is classical. It is the dance of royalty."
"Do you feel intimidated, too?" Harry whispered in Neville's ear.
"Yup," the other boy replied, eyes wide and fearful.
"Boys, pay attention," Augusta said, glaring. "I needed help to teach you both, as I am currently incapable of being in two places at once, so one of my friends offered to help."
"Please let it not be Madam Girard. Please let it not be Madam Girard," Neville kept muttering under his breath.
"Why not?" Harry whispered, frowning in curiosity.
"She smells like onions, and her breath smells of tobacco," Neville said. "And she pinches my cheeks whenever she sees me. When I was little, it wasn't just the cheeks on my face, either." He shuddered violently, while Harry just looked disgusted.
"I'm not late am I?" a voice came from the doorway, and to both boys' relief, it was Minerva McGonagall.
Augusta smiled. "Of course not, Minerva. I was just explaining to the boys about the differences in dance styles. We will, of course, be starting with the waltz."
"Excellent," the Transfiguration Professor said, unwrapping a knit shawl from her shoulders and dropping it onto a chair that was sitting against one wall.
"I will work with Neville, if you would be so kind as to work with Harry," Augusta said.
Minerva nodded in response before walking over to Harry, who was looking more nervous by the minute. "Oh, don't look at me like that, Mr. Potter. I don't bite unless I'm in cat form, and I think you're safe from that."
"Yes, Ma'am," Harry responded, blushing.
"Place your right hand on my waist, Mr. Potter," Minerva instructed. "Don't be shy." She grabbed his hand and placed it on her waist. "And hold your left arm out like this. With your elbow bent slightly, Mr. Potter," she added when he held it out straight.
"Is this better?" Harry asked tentatively.
"Yes, it is." She smiled down at him. "Please remember to lead me," she said.
"Lead?" he asked, unsure of what that meant.
"Yes," Minerva said. "You lead me around the dance floor. We certainly won't be staying in just one place."
"Oh," Harry muttered, blinking his eyes several times.
"You will hold your partner's hand like this," Minerva instructed, placing her right hand in his left. "Now, you will step forward on your left foot on the count of one. On the second count, you bring your right foot forward, next to your left without stepping down, then immediately move it to the right and set it down. Then on the third count you bring your left foot next to your right, and set it down. Then on the next count of one, you step backward on your right foot. Then you bring your left foot backward and to the left on the second count, and bring your right foot next to the left on the third count. Do you have all that?"
"I think so," Harry said. "I apologize in advance if I accidentally step on your feet, though."
"Don't worry. This isn't the first time I've had to teach someone to dance. I know well to expect my feet to be stepped on." The professor smiled slightly at her student. "I believe we are ready for music now, Augusta," she said, turning slightly to face the other woman.
Augusta flicked her wand at an old phonograph in the corner of the room, and after the scratchy sound of nothing, the music started.
"One, two, three. One, two, three," the professor began counting as they moved.
Harry stumbled on the first count and tried to move faster to catch up, only making himself stumble. Soon though he was moving with a modicum of grace, years of dodging Dudley's punches aiding him now.
"Head up, Mr. Potter," Minerva said. "A lady likes to think that her face is more interesting than your feet."
Harry stumbled again for the first few steps while looking up, but soon got back into the pattern of the dance. Every now and then he stumbled or overstepped, landing on McGonagall's feet by mistake.
"You both did very well for your first times dancing," Augusta said when Harry and Minerva stopped dancing. "We will see you again tomorrow afternoon at this same time to continue our lessons. Alright?"
"Yes, Ma'am," Harry said.
At the same time, Neville said, "Yes, Gran."
- - -
Meanwhile in Scotland…
"You wanted to see me, Professor," Sirius said, entering the Headmaster's office after hearing him say 'enter'.
"Ah, yes, Sirius," Albus Dumbledore said, beckoning his former student with one hand, eyes twinkling madly. "May I inquire as to where you are staying now that you've been released? I can't imagine that you'd want to return to Black Manor."
"You may inquire," Sirius said, his own gray eyes sparkling, "But I am under no obligation to answer."
The Headmaster laughed slightly, shaking his head, knowing that would be the only answer he'd receive from the Marauder.
"Now why don't you get straight to the point, and ask me where Harry is, then tell me in all of your so-called wisdom that he must be returned to the Dursleys," Sirius said, proving that despite all evidence to the contrary, he was quite intelligent.
"Actually, Sirius, that is not what I asked you here for. I am well aware that you will not tell me where young Mr. Potter is, nor will you allow him to be returned to his family," Dumbledore said seriously.
"I beg your pardon, sir, but they are not his family. Family loves you, therefore they are no more his family than Walburga Black was mine," Sirius said, his eyes briefly flashing with rage.
"Point taken," Dumbledore said, sadness in his eyes. "In truth, I asked you here today in hopes that I could convince you to teach Defense this year. It would seem that I am once again in need of a new professor. We do go through them on a regular basis, don't we," he asked rhetorically, smiling softly despite the fact that the curse on the position was nothing to laugh at.
"Why me?" Sirius asked, not wanting to beat around the bush.
"In truth, Sirius, I am desperate. I have been unable to find anyone else for the position, and the Department of Education keeps threatening to assign a Ministry worker to the position if I don't get someone. My only options are you or Remus as Alastor refuses to come out of retirement to teach 'a bunch of snot-nosed brats'. You know that the Ministry would never allow a werewolf to teach, no matter how well he did on his NEWTs and WOMBATs in the subject. I could perhaps keep Remus' condition a secret for a time, but there are those who would take pleasure in revealing his condition and accusing me of putting the children in danger," Albus said, looking every one of his century and a half years of life.
Sirius stared at the Headmaster in shock after this speech and thought about what he was offering. On one hand it would be good for Harry to have him around all the time, and he could continue teaching the boys to fence. On the other hand, he had once sworn that he would never be in that sort of a position of authority. Really, Sirius Black, a teacher? It was ridiculous… but oddly enticing as well.
"I'll do it, on one condition," Sirius said, looking determined.
"And what is that?" Dumbledore asked, looking relieved.
"I have a second bedroom in my suite for Harry to stay in whenever he wants, even during the school term. There are no rules that say a student can only sleep in the dormitory, so it should be no problem," Sirius said.
"That is acceptable," Dumbledore said. "Now, I have one more favor to ask."
Sirius' eyes narrowed. "What?"
"I would like you to bring Harry to my office sometime soon so I may discuss his electives for this year with him," the Headmaster said.
"Why?" Sirius asked in confusion.
The Headmaster sighed. "He signed up for Care of Magical Creatures, Arithmancy, and Ancient Runes, but he really must take Divination. It's imperative, Sirius," he said solemnly.
Sirius' eyes narrowed. "There is no way in hell that I will let you do that! Harry made his choices, and quite frankly, they were smarter ones than I made. Divination is a load of crap and you know it! Seers are born, not taught! If this is about his prophecy in the Department of Mysteries, then you're wasting your time because he already knows it."
"WHAT?" Dumbledore yelled, leaping to his feet. "He's too young! He deserves a childhood! Really, Sirius, I thought better of you than this."
Sirius glared at the old man. "For your information, he is the one who told me, not the other way around, and to be quite frank, he is more of an adult than I was when I was twenty. He is not depressed or incapable of realizing the severity of this. He is training to face that monster again, and he will still have some semblance of youth, as he will continue with Quidditch and having a girlfriend."
"Very well," Albus said, not looking pleased. "Then I expect that you will be rejoining the Order as we prepare for the continued fight against Voldemort."
"Actually Headmaster," Sirius said, smirking. "You can take your Group of the Charred Turkey and shove it where the sun doesn't shine! Leave the preparing to those who are in need of it. Last time we were at odds with the Ministry, if Madam Bones wins then that will no longer be a problem. Furthermore, if you want to lead a band of fighters, then by Merlin, quit running a school and become the Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement!" Sirius yelled the last, making his point quite clear. "Also, if we have anymore incidents like the last two years, where my godson had to fight a Death Eater possessed by Voldemort, and a Basilisk controlled by Voldemort, then so help me, you will find yourself working in the Hog's Head with Aberforth! You might have forgotten, but both the Potters and the Blacks have seats on the Hogwarts Board of Governors. The Blacks are distant descendents of Rowena's, you know, and the Potter's are true Gryffindors of the direct line. Take that and shove it up your skinny, wrinkled arse!"
Albus Dumbledore looked far more pale than normal, and simply responded, "So be it. I will not interfere unless it seems necessary."
"So be it," Sirius repeated the old man's words.
25 Points: What actor was in both the Harry Potter films and Lost in Space?