Meg: Just wanted to let you know that I did not write the previous chapter in 45 minutes. I meant that the chapter took place in 45 minutes. The chapter took like three weeks to write. I thank you for the compliment though!

This is it people, the end...


Chapter 18: The Promise


Selene squinted as light found its way into her eyes. Her sleep had been fitful, yet necessary, as the confrontation with Voldemort had left her completely drained of energy. As she opened her eyes and consciousness returned, she could still hear the sound of her voice mingled with that of the Book of Carmen. Dread overcame her when she thought about her actions and what she had done, and longed to fall back to sleep, but instead her partially opened eyes fell upon a pair of twinkling blue ones.

Selene blinked several times to bring the room into focus and realized that it was Dumbledore who sat beside her. "Professor Dumbledore?" she asked.

"Good morning Selene." He said quietly, the softness of his eyes and the tenderness of his voice made her momentarily forget her woes.

Selene smiled softly and asked, "How is Harry?"

"I'm afraid that Harry is still quite out of it, but he appears to be fine, especially after what he's been through. After all, he's the only person who has survived the Avada Kedavra curse twice."

"Then you know what happened?" Selene asked.

"Partly. I've pieced a few things together from what Ron and Sirius told me, and from my own intuition. I was hoping that you could fill in some of the blanks."

"Ron and Sirius? What would they have known?"

Dumbledore smiled slightly, "They were the first to find you."

"They? You mean that Sirius..."

"Came to your aid? Of course he did, he was the first to go." Dumbledore paused for a moment, "Does that surprise you?"

Selene fingered the edge of her pillowcase in an effort to look as though she had control over her emotions. "I just thought, after what he said that night in Hogsmeade..."

Dumbledore removed her hand from her pillowcase and placed it in his own, "Selene, many things change in this world, but I assure you that Sirius' love for you has not." He nodded to the other side of Selene's bed. She turned and saw Sirius in a chair next to her, asleep. He wore a loose fitting shirt that was unbuttoned revealing new bandages underneath, his right hand was also wrapped and lying in his lap. His left hand supported his head, which lolled slowly back and forth as he slept.

"He would not leave your side. Madam Pomfrey received quite a shock upon seeing a convicted murderer in her hospital wing." Dumbledore smiled, "However, I think she has grown quite fond of him. He's the only person she's allowed to stay here overnight, including myself."

As she looked at the sleeping Sirius, Selene wondered what had caused him to be wounded, "Is he ok?"

"Yes. Sirius had quite a time trying to get to you and Harry, and I daresay that he will be sore for a while, but on the whole he faired quite well." Sirius stirred, slowly waking up, and Dumbledore thought that this would be a good time to make an exit, as he had some very confused Ministry members arriving the next day and he had countless things to do before they arrived. He rose from his seat, "If you don't mind, I'll leave you two alone now."

Selene nodded, "There's something that I should tell you, concerning Volde..."

Dumbledore cut off her words with a wave of his hand, "This is not the time to be discussing such things, we will talk later. Sirius is waking, and I believe you have far more pressing matters to attend to."

At Dumbledore's words Selene turned once again to Sirius, she then turned back to say thank you to Dumbledore, but the old wizard was gone. She heard Sirius stir and turned her attention back to him.

Sirius woke from his nap slowly. For the first time in days he had actually slept soundly and fought having to wake up. However when he finally opened his eyes, all thoughts of sleep were forgotten as he saw Selene looking back at him. Her brilliant red hair and green eyes were a stark contrast to the paleness of her skin and the white of the pillows and sheets that surrounded her. At that moment Selene reminded Sirius of an ice sculpture, something so beautiful and tangible, yet fragile and evanescent.

Sirius moved closer to her and smiled softly, "How are you?" he asked.

"I'm okay."
A pause followed, as the two tried to figure out how to say what they knew needed to be said, how to express emotions that had been denied to them both for so long.

"You came." Selene said finally.

"Of course I came." Sirius said, "Did you believe that I would abandon you?"

"But that night, you turned me away ..." Selene said, tears clear in her eyes.

Sirius hated himself for having caused her pain and stroked the side of her face with the back of his hand, wishing that he could wipe away every hurt within her. "I have made many mistakes in my life, but the biggest mistake was in letting you walk out of that cave without me." he said softly to her. He stood and placed his hands on either side of her body and leaned in close, their faces no more than a foot apart. "I'm sorry Selene. Can you forgive me for being so blind?"

When he moved over Selene his unopened shirt fell against the sheets, the corner of it touching her hand. Again she looked at the bandages that covered his chest and arm. She reached up and touched them gently, knowing that he already had her forgiveness. She only hoped that when the truth of her own actions came to light, she would have his. She smiled and nodded, not yet daring to trust her own voice.

Sirius' hardened face softened, his stoic look gone and replaced with a soft smile that melted years from his face. He reached into his pocket and pulled out two golden rings. Selene, although surprised at what he held, said nothing. Sirius looked at the rings briefly and then returned his gaze to Selene, "The first time we put these rings on we promised to love and to trust each other. I'm afraid that I broke that promise when I turned you away, but never for one second did I stop loving you. So with your permission..." he paused only long enough to remove Selene's hand from his chest and slip the smaller of the rings onto her finger, "I would like to try again."

Selene sat up slowly and took the other ring from Sirius' hand, and repeating his own actions, slipped it onto his finger, "So would I." she said.

Sirius pulled his wife close and held her. He soon felt her arms reach around him carefully and return the embrace. Sirius felt the warmth of her skin against his, and breathed in deeply, allowing the smell of her hair to fill his senses. Selene leaned back against her pillows and brought Sirius with her, his head coming to rest on her chest. Her heartbeat reverberated within his ears and echoed throughout his body. He found himself drifting back to sleep, the pain and torment of the last fourteen years forgotten, replaced by a wonderful sense of peace.


When Dumbledore returned to the hospital wing that night he found Sirius and Selene talking softly. As he approached the couple he gave a polite nod to Madam Pomfrey who was keeping a silent watch over a sleeping Harry.

Selene saw Dumbledore approach. He nodded to her, signaling that it was now time for them to talk. Dumbledore hated to take Selene away from Sirius so soon after they were truly reunited, but there were questions that needed answers, and Selene was the only one that could provide them.

Selene nodded and got up from the bed. Sirius started to follow her, but she stopped him by whispering something into his ear. Sirius nodded and sat back down, but it was obvious that he still wanted to follow her. Dumbledore waited while Selene slipped on some clean clothing and the two left the hospital wing and traversed the long hallways of Hogwarts. They said little as they walked and were met by few students or professors, as it was past ten, and most students and personnel had retired to their respective towers.

Finally they reached an empty classroom and the two entered. Dumbledore pulled a chair from behind a student's desk and sat down, while Selene stood at the window fingering her ring. "Where should I start?" she asked.

"I always find that it helps to start at the beginning."

Selene took a deep breath and nodded, "I remember waking up and finding that Harry was with me," she said and then continued to tell Dumbledore the events of that awful night, trying not to leave out a single detail. Every once in awhile Dumbledore would nod or ask a question, but on the whole he said very little.

Selene told all of the events up to when Harry was struck with the Avada Kedavra curse and then paused. At first Dumbledore thought that she was trying to remember what had happened, but the look on her face told him that she knew exactly what happened, she just didn't, or couldn't, tell him. Dumbledore tried to make things a little easier for her, "Selene, we will take this a step at a time. Harry ripped up the spell that could transfer your magic to Voldemort, is this correct?"


"Voldemort than performed the Avada Kedavra curse on Harry."


"However, the small amount of magic that you transferred to Harry kept him safe."

"Yes, momentarily."

"Then what did you do?"

Selene swallowed hard, "I ran to the Book of Carmen looking for a spell I could use against Voldemort."

"Which spell?"

"One that would keep Harry safe..."

"Which spell Selene?"

"and eliminate Voldemort as a threat."

"Selene, you need to tell me which spell you used."

A tear rolled down Selene's face, "Geist Legatura."

Dumbledore sank into his chair, feeling a deep sense of woe and foreboding. Dumbledore knew that Geist Legatura was a binding spell, and an evil one at that. The spell gives the caster control over the very spirit of his victim. However, Dumbledore thought darkly, that was not the only thing it does. It binds the spirits of the caster with that of the victim, the two become one. Selene's spirit was bound to Voldemort's. "Selene..."

"There was no other way!" she said defensively, wiping her face with her hand. "He was going to kill Harry!"

"You know what this means."

"Yes! Of course I do! Voldemort is not dead. His spirit remains! My sin allowed that monster to live, but what choice did I have? To let the child die like his mother?"

Dumbledore stood and walked over to Selene who was visibly shaking. Now face to face with her, he said, "You were not responsible for Lily or James' death, I know you think you are, but you are not."

"But my magic..."

"Is not all-powerful, nor are you. Selene, you are human. Nothing more, nothing less."

Selene wiped her face again, ashamed of the weakness that she was exhibiting in front of Dumbledore. "Where is the Book of Carmen?" she asked.

Dumbledore looked concerned, "Why do you ask?"

"I bound his spirit to those pages, Voldemort is in the Book. The Book must be kept safe."

"I give you my word that the Book of Carmen will be well protected." Dumbledore said and then lowered his head, his eyes looking at Selene over the top of his spectacles, "from everyone."

Selene nodded.

When Dumbledore was convinced that Selene had told him everything that she could he said, "Let's go back to the hospital wing and see how your nephew is faring." He offered his arm to Selene who hesitantly took it and the two left the classroom.


Sirius had gotten tired of waiting around in the hospital ward and so he decided to take a walk. Although Madam Pomfrey had mended his hand, it was still quite sore, which disabled him from changing into his animagus form. Instead Sirius used the dark corridors of Hogwarts as a disguise.

He had walked the distance of one of the longer halls and was about to turn around and head back when he ran into Snape.

"What are you doing lurking around in the dark, Black?" Snape snarled.

Sirius tried to ignore Snape and walk past him, but Snape grabbed his arm and pull him back into a wall. Sirius grimaced as his wounded arm hit stone.

"I thought you might still be feeling the affects of the curse," Snape hissed. "Danus Infernis is a particularly nasty curse, designed for the likes of you," he added pushing Sirius' arm further into the wall. "To bad the Death Eater didn't finish you off."

"Get away from me!" Sirius yelled, pushing the other wizard away from him. He was going to say something else, when he heard Selene's voice coming down the hall mingled with the voice of Dumbledore. He glared at Snape before turning away from him and following the direction of the voices.

"That's right, walk away Sirius. Go back to your whore."

Without thinking, Sirius turned back and hit Snape as hard as he could. Snape staggered backwards, surprised at the action, but Sirius was upon him in no time. He grabbed Snape by the neck and pushed him against the wall. He leaned closer to Snape, tightening his grip on the wizard's throat. "Go on...Go on and kill me then." Snape gasped, his air supply becoming dangerously thin.

"Never...ever...insult my wife in my presence again or I will kill you." Sirius said and released Snape, who sagged against the wall.

"Just as I thought." Snape said between deep breaths, "Sirius Black has lost his nerve. I suspected as much when I saw Pettigrew."

"What are you talking about?" Sirius said impatiently, Selene's voice coming closer.

Snape smiled and straightened himself up, "You don't know do you? What a twist of fate."

Sirius said nothing, but glared at Snape.

"The two Death Eaters that you dispatched with in the lower levels of their keep, I found them. I also noticed that one had a silver hand."

The realization suddenly struck Sirius, and it was clear on his face.

Snape's smile widened, "You left Pettigrew alive...again. Your freedom was so close, but you left it behind when you left Pettigrew in that hallway."

"You lie." Sirius said.

Snape laughed, "Not this time." He then disappeared into another hallway just as Selene and Dumbledore approached Sirius.

"Sirius?" Selene asked. When she didn't get a response she touched his arm. He jumped at her touch. "Are you okay?" she asked him.

"I'm fine."

"Dumbledore and I are going to see Harry. Would you like to join us?"

Sirius shook his head, "No. to be alone for a few minutes." He then smiled at Selene to assure her that he was okay and walked away.

Selene started to follow, not convinced by the smile, but Dumbledore held her back, "Let him be," Dumbledore said, then watched as Sirius' figure disappeared, "He has his own demons to battle."


Harry opened his eyes to a dark room. For a minute his stomach sank, fearing that he was once again in that dark room with Voldemort, but he saw the familiar tall windows of the hospital wing and his senses slowly returned.

He saw a woman approach his bed and lean close to him, checking to see if he was awake. He didn't have his glasses on and so he couldn't figure out who this woman was.

"Harry? Are you awake?" the woman asked, "It's Selene."

"Selene?" he asked excitedly and fumbled for his glasses, "Are you okay? I saw all that yellow light and I thought that..."

"I'm fine." Selene said, handing Harry his glasses from the table beside his bed.

"What happened to you? To Voldemort? Is he dead?"

Selene said nothing and walked to the end of Harry's bed.

"I'm afraid that Voldemort was not killed, Harry." Another voice said from the darkness. Harry turned and saw Dumbledore approaching his bed, a lit candle in one hand. Dumbledore placed the candle on the bedside table and said, "Voldemort's body was indeed destroyed, but his spirit and his evil remain."

Harry looked to Selene to see if she could explain Dumbledore's murky answer, but she wasn't looking at Harry, instead she was looking off into the distance, her mind somewhere else.

"How?" Harry asked.

"Selene performed a spell that encased Voldemort's spirit into the very pages of the weapon he sought to destroy the both of you with." Dumbledore explained.

A shiver ran down Harry's spine as the image of the Book of Carmen and the voices flooded his memory. Trapped by those voices and bound with that eel-like evil seemed to be a fitting fate for Voldemort. "Can he get out?" Harry asked.

"I'm afraid there is a way for Voldemort's evil to be released. But for that to happen, someone would have to find the Book of Carmen, which I assure you is quite well protected." Dumbledore looked up and saw Madam Pomfrey eyeing him suspiciously, "I'll be leaving shortly Poppy." He said to her and she smiled back. Dumbledore turned back to Harry, "Goodnight Harry. I'm glad to see that you are well again."

As he watched Dumbledore leave, he was aware that Selene was moving beside him. "Harry." she said. Harry turned to face her and his green eyes locked on hers. "I just wanted to tell you that you did a very brave thing in tearing up that spell. Being able to put the lives of others before your own is a very admirable trait, and also very rare. Everyday I become more and more amazed by the famous Harry Potter." She said with a smile. "Your parents would be so proud of you."

"My parents *are* proud of me." Harry replied.

Selene smiled, "Yes, I'm sure they are." She leaned forward and kissed Harry gently on the forehead. She turned to leave but Harry stopped her, "Tell me about them."

"What do you want to know?"

"Everything. I don't know anything about them, except that they died trying to protect me. I'm tired of hearing about how they died. I want to know how they lived. I want to know things like what my dad's favorite food was and what my mother's favorite color was."

"That I can help you with." Selene said and sat on Harry's bed. He moved over to make room for her and she put an arm behind him, bringing them closer together, so only the two of them would hear their words. "Cake. James could not turn down a piece of cake. In fact for his birthday Lily always made him two cakes. One he could share with family and friends, and one just for him. And Lily...Lily's favorite color was yellow, not a harsh bright yellow, but a softer shade. Frosty yellow she called it. The outside of their house was yellow, and she said that the color always reminded her of home."

Selene talked all night to Harry about his parents and what they were like when they were alive. Even as the first rays of daylight filtered through the large windows opposite the bed, neither Selene nor Harry wanted the stories to end. Selene found comfort in telling Harry about her sister and James, she felt as if they were almost alive again. And for the first time Harry was able to know his parents as the happy and loving people that they were, and to him that was a very special gift.


Ron watched Hermione pace back and forth in front of him. She stopped only long enough to mumble a few words such as, "so much trouble" and "expelled." The scene would have been comical to him, but for the butterflies in his own stomach. "Hermione will you please stop doing that," he said to her impatiently.

"Doing what?"

"Pacing. It is driving me absolutely bonkers!"

"Well I can't help it! When I get nervous I pace."


"Its not like I don't have any good reason to be nervous. Dumbledore DID call us from class to his office, which I don't think has ever happened before. You ARE aware that we broke like fifty rules in doing what we did. Have you not SEEN the way Snape has been smiling, he knows that we are going to be expelled, what else could get him in such a good mood?"

Ron started to answer, but Hermione didn't think that she wanted to hear Ron's answer, so she cut him off, "This is serious Ron!"

"Don't you think I know that?" Ron said defensively. "I just don't see how digging a trench in front of Dumbledore's office is going to help our situation."

Hermione, finally fed up with Ron, threw her hands in the air and turned around, her arms crossed and her lips tight. Eventually she heard Ron get up from his sitting position and walk over beside her. "Do you regret it Herm? Do you regret what we did?"

"No." Hermione said softly, "And I would do it again."

"Me too." Ron said, and put his arm around her. They had to wait only a few more minutes before they heard Dumbledore coming up the stairs. Hermione rubbed her stomach, her own butterflies rattling inside.

"Ah, Ron and Hermione." Dumbledore said climbing the last of the stairs. "I'm glad Professor McGonagall allowed you a few minutes of class time to talk to me. Please come into my office."

Ron and Hermione entered the office, both taking seats in front of Dumbledore's desk. Hermione, unable to contain herself any longer, said, "Professor, sir, I would just like to say..."

Dumbledore raised a hand to silence her. Hermione shut up immediately. Ron figured that this was the first time that anyone had successfully silenced Hermione. "First," Dumbledore said, "I want to make it clear that no apologies for your actions are necessary. Although your actions were careless and foolhardy, the reasons behind them were not. I will not have anyone apologize for being a good friend in my school. Loyalty and courage are the strongest traits of any Gryffindor, and you two are fine examples to your house."

Ron and Hermione exchanged quick smiles.

"However, I can not overlook the danger you put yourselves in, nor can I forget your careless disregard for rules and authority. There are quite a few professors here who believe that I should expel you both."

Ron chanced a look a Hermione who had turned whiter than he had ever seen Peeves look.

"But there is something that must be taken into account. A certain wizard owes his life to you. Sirius has told me several times that he would have died if not for the care that you two provided for him. And upon seeing the nature of his wounds, I believe him. Therefore, your punishments are as follows. Hermione..."

Hermione, if it were possible, turned whiter

"Everyday for the next two months you will report to Madam Pomfrey after classes. You are to assist her with her work, and do whatever she needs of you. She has agreed to offer some pointers on how exactly to wrap wounds that were caused by curses," he said with a wink.

To Ron the punishment sounded more like a learning experience, which to Hermione was hardly punishment. Ron watched the color slowly return to Hermione's face.

"Mr. Weasley, since you believed yourself worthy of attacking a full grown Death Eater, you are to report to Hagrid, and help him with some of his more...err...interesting pets. You will begin working with Hagrid after your detentions with Mr. Malfoy are finished."

Ron knew a thing or to about Hagrid's so-called "pets" and was somewhat afraid of what he might be asked to do, but time with Hagrid was definitely never boring, and considering how close he came to being expelled, Ron considered this punishment a blessing. He was looking forward to it more than he was to his detentions with Malfoy anyway.

Dumbledore continued, "Now that that business is taken care of, I want to tell you something else. In a few minutes a collection of Ministry members will be joining us. They are understandably confused over the recent events, so I have invited them here in an effort to clear things up. I ask that you two stay, because you both have seen too much to be left in the dark now."

Ron and Hermione looked at each other excitedly. Ron knew that underage witches and wizards were never invited to sit in on Ministry meetings; this had to be a first. Ron couldn't wait to tell Percy.

Dumbledore continued, "I only ask two things of you. First, I ask that you do not reveal that Sirius and Selene are still at Hogwarts. The Ministry still sees Sirius as a murderer, and Selene isn't even supposed to exist. Second, I ask that you speak of this to no one. The information discussed in this room is not to leave this room. Do I make myself clear?"

"Yes sir," answered both Hermione and Ron.

"Good." Dumbledore said. No sooner had Ron relaxed in his chair, when a knock on the door signaled the Ministers' arrival, and Dumbledore left his seat to open the door. A group of highly agitated and talkative Ministry members, walked into the office.

"Gentlemen, if you would please take a seat." Dumbledore said conjuring up eight additional chairs. Ron and Hermione pushed their chairs away from the center of the room. The Ministry members were so caught up in their own chatter that they didn't even notice the young witch and wizard.

"Ron, do you know any of these people?" Hermione asked.

"Yeah, a few." Ron pointed over to a short balding man with red hair, "That's Ian Brady. He's the head of Magical Artifacts. The tall lanky blond over there is Elliot Spencer; he works in the office with Percy. I've run into him a couple of times, he's quiet, kind of creepy really. The guy talking to Fudge is Jacob...lon...lanc...Landford!" Ron said snapping his fingers, "Charlie worked with him in Romania. But I don't know why he would be here."

"Let's get down to business." Fudge said, "Dumbledore what do you have to tell us?"

"Patience Minister. First I would like to introduce you all to Miss Hermione Granger and a Mr. Ronald Weasley. They are here by my request."

Ron and Hermione suddenly felt all eyes turn towards them. "Students? Really Albus, I hardly think our business concerns them." Fudge said.

"It most certainly does! Our business concerns every student in Hogwarts, as well as every witch and wizard in England. Besides, they have information about events that I was not there to witness." Dumbledore said with such authority that even Fudge didn't press the matter. "Now, I will tell you of the events as I know them to be. Hermione and Ron, if there are any discrepancies in my story, feel free to correct me; I am only just beginning to understand what happened myself. Dumbledore cleared his throat and began, "There is no doubt that many remarkable events have transpired within the past week, and the actions of a few will have an impact on us all."

Fudge interrupted, "Please Albus, tell us, is You Know Who gone for good?"

Dumbledore's eyes narrowed at having been interrupted, again, but his voice showed no sign of annoyance, "Voldemort and his evil have been contained, he is no longer a threat."

Fudge relaxed in his chair, "He is dead then."

"No. I did not say that. I said his evil was contained, not destroyed. His spirit is contained within the Book of Carmen." Dumbledore looked at Ian Brady, knowing that he would have something to say.

Indeed he did, "The Book of Carmen? Surely that is impossible! In order for someone to be able to use the Book of Carmen they would have to be a magmanos. The last magmanos died more than a hundred years ago." Brady then chuckled, "Unless of course you've been hiding one here." The rest of the Ministry members laughed at Brady's joke. Dumbledore smiled too, but not for the same reasons they did.

"I assure you that the Book does contain the spirit of Voldemort and that a magmanos put him there," Dumbledore said and the laughter ceased immediately.

"Where is she?" Fudge asked.

"She? How do they know it's a she?" Ron whispered to Hermione.

"Because magmani are almost always female," Hermione replied.

"She is safe, but frightened," Dumbledore said.

"So you know where she is then Albus?" Fudge asked. "I must insist that you tell us."


Fudge stood from his chair, "Because there is so much we could learn from her. She has the power to unlock the secrets of the Book of Carmen, something that we have been trying to do for years!"

"You've been trying to what?" Dumbledore asked emphatically.

"A group of us have come close to...well... you explain it Jacob."

Jacob, seemingly surprised at having to say something, cleared his thought, "Before the Book was stolen we thought we had found a way to decode the text and gain access to the Book's magic."

Dumbledore looked stunned. "I am very glad that you didn't succeed."

"Then you don't understand the wonderful magic that the Book contains," Jacob added.

Dumbledore shook his head, unwilling to believe the stupidity that he was hearing. "There are few things in this world that are without a degree of goodness, that are wholly evil, but I guarantee you that the Book of Carmen is such an object. You would be more likely to find goodness in Voldemort that in that Book! The only thing that book contains are instruments of death and destruction. Besides, once magmani are exposed to that magic it is very hard for them to turn the Book away, to give up the magic so to speak. No wonder the magmanos is terrified, seeing that this is the way you'd want her to use her power," Dumbledore said disgustedly.

"If that is true, then why don't you destroy it? You said that only evil comes from the book and I happen to agree," Brady said, "Why don't we just toss it into a stove and be done with it?"

The question took Dumbledore by surprise. He knew that the destruction of the Book would also mean the destruction of Selene. "We do not know the nature of the spell that the magmanos used to imprison Voldemort. For all we know, destroying the Book would release him, and I doubt anyone here would like to see that happen."

"Then what are we to do?" Fudge asked.

"My friends, I ask that you leave this matter to me. You have trusted me before when it came to dealing with important matters, and I hope that you are able trust my decisions once more. The Book of Carmen will be protected, and if the situation changes, you have my word that I will notify you."

Fudge nodded and sat back down. "I for one do trust you Dumbledore, which is why I trust that you will answer my next question truthfully. There have been rumors that Sirius Black has been seen in the area, what do you know about this?"

Dumbledore thought carefully about his response. True, he had wanted to avoid bringing Sirius into the conversation, but he felt he had no other choice. Telling Fudge about Sirius would reinforce Fudge's trust for him, and if he had that then Dumbledore knew that Selene and the Book would be safe from the meddlings of the Ministry. "Sirius Black has been to see me." The room grew quiet, no one knowing quite what to say.

"He has? He got into Hogwarts? Again? Was anyone hurt?" Fudge asked.

"Yes, but Sirius had nothing to do with it. The Death Eaters that got into the school were the real problem. Sirius came to help us."

"To help?" Fudge laughed, "A convicted murderer? Surely Dumbledore you have more intelligence than to believe that slime like that would do anything to help you."

"He did not kill those people!" Ron said before he could stop himself. He just couldn't stand to hear Sirius spoken of like that. Not after what the two of them had gone through to get to Harry and Selene. He was about to tell Fudge what he really thought of him when a look from Dumbledore stopped him.

"Ah, the gullibility of youth." Fudge said in a patronizing tone.

"You may not believe Ron, but trust me when I say that Sirius did come to our aid. When Harry Potter was taken, Sirius went after the Death Eaters who took him. He and Ron found Harry and the Book of Carmen before it was too late. We all owe him a debt of gratitude."

Every Ministry member's mouth dropped. None could believe that Dumbledore spoke about Sirius Black in the manner that he did. "Believe what you want Dumbledore, but I am insisting on higher security here and at Hogsmeade. You can't trust Sirius Black, who knows what his motives were. Perhaps he did it only so he could gain your trust, thereby enabling him to stab you in the back later on," Fudge said and the other members nodded in agreement.

Ron clenched his teeth together, to prevent himself from saying anything else.

Fudge continued, "I hope that you aren't hiding him within these walls. If the parents of your students happened to find out that you are harboring a fugitive at Hogwarts, I'm afraid you would find these halls quite empty."

"Is that a threat?" Dumbledore said quietly, but his words sounded harsh.

"No, only a warning," Fudge said. "You have my trust that you will tell me if Black ever shows up again. And you have the full support of the Ministry in doing what you feel needs to be done with the Book of Carmen...for now. Now if you will excuse us, Headmaster," Fudge said and then turned to Ron and Hermione, "and Mr. Weasley and Miss Granger, we have some celebrating to do. You Know Who is gone, and that is a great thing indeed! Good-bye Albus, I trust that you'll keep in touch." Fudge stood and left the room, his colleagues right behind him, and soon the room was left with only its original occupants.

"I can't believe that they didn't believe you about Sirius." Ron said.

Dumbledore smiled, "I didn't think that they would, but Sirius is my friend, and as his friend I had to try." Dumbledore's eyes came to rest on Fawkes' cage, "I believe they are serving lunch in the Main hall. I suggest you two go get something to eat, and then visit Harry in the hospital wing. I'm sure he will be anxious to hear about your own adventures."

Ron and Hermione left Dumbledore's office quickly and, abandoning their growling stomachs, headed straight for the hospital wing.


As soon as Ron and Hermione left his office, Dumbledore walked over to Fawkes and let him nibble on his finger. He then reached behind the bird to a dusty bookcase where he removed a book. Dumbledore smiled to himself at the irony that the book for which the Ministry sought had been under their noses the entire time.

He took the book and left his office. He had bound the book tightly and held it close to him. He descended into one of the many secret passageways of Hogwarts and walked for a long time until he surfaced within the boundaries of the Dark Forest. Although it was daytime, the thick canopy of trees overhead blocked any sunlight from hitting the ground below. Dumbledore leaned against a tree and waited for a few moments until a shadowy figure approached him. The figure was cloaked, and although Dumbledore could not see his face, he knew instinctively that it was who he had been waiting for. "I'm glad you could make it," Dumbledore said to the stranger.

"I came as soon as I got your message," The man replied.

"I know I am asking a lot of you, but you are one of the few people I know I can trust with this," Dumbledore said tapping the cover of the Book. "I'm afraid it cannot stay at Hogwarts, its evil is too great and the minds of the Ministry are too curious. I trust you will protect this with your life."

"You have my word." The man said and took the book from Dumbledore, "It is true then, that Selene is alive?"

"Yes it is."

"Is it true that she used Geist Legatura?"


The stranger snickered, "That sounds like something she would do, to risk everything for someone she loves."

Strange howls were heard in the distance, "You better go," Dumbledore said and then smiled, "There might be wolves about."

"Indeed there are." The stranger said and laughed again, a few strands of dusty brown hair escaping from his hood. He held the book tight just as Dumbledore had done, "I will protect this with my life."

"Good. For it is not only your life that depends on it." Dumbledore clasped the man's hand, "Thank you." he said and the other man nodded and left, and Dumbledore climbed back into the passageway and made his way back to Hogwarts, feeling the need for a good nap before he continued with the business of the day.


When Ron and Hermione reached the hospital wing Harry was not there. He and Selene had abandoned the stuffy room for the gardens outside. The air was brisk, and Selene was once again clothed in her red robes. They passed few students, as most were eating in the main hall. The ones that they did pass were more interested in topics of Quidditch and homework then they were in the odd witch that they passed.

Selene and Harry didn't notice the other students either. Although they had progressed from the hospital wing to the gardens, their topic of conversation had not changed. Selene could not believe how many stories she remembered about Lily and James. She told Harry all that she could remember and soon they had started talking about the Marauders. Harry laughed when he heard about all the trouble that Sirius, Remus, and his father had caused during their years at Hogwarts.

"One Halloween Sirius decided that it would be a good idea to bewitch the food during the feast so that it moved every time you tried to stick a fork in it," Selene said and then laughed, "Of course food was everywhere and the students were crawling all over the tables and underneath trying to pin down their main course."

"That was not my idea," a voice said from behind them. Harry turned around to find Sirius walking up behind them. "It was James'. It would have gone on for days as well, but someone ate the enchanted pumpkin that was the source of the spell. But the look on Snape's face when his caramel apple screamed as he bit into it, made it all worth while."

Harry looked at the man who he knew was his godfather, although Sirius did not look quite the same. For one thing his long hair was combed and pulled back, and his face looked like years had suddenly been wiped away. The corner of his mouth was turned up slightly at the thought of the Halloween feast years ago, and suddenly Harry saw Sirius as his father had known him, confident and mischievous. Harry wondered for a minute what could have caused such a miraculous transformation, and then he saw the look that Sirius gave Selene. Everything was suddenly explained in that one look. Harry knew that somehow Sirius and Selene had worked things out. If any doubt remained, it was wiped away when Harry noticed that they both were wearing identical golden rings. Harry smiled wider than he could ever remember smiling.

"Harry," Selene said, "We wanted to talk to you about something."

Harry nodded and the three continued walking, Sirius on Harry's right and Selene on his left. Selene continued, "Sirius and I have decided that it is time to start over and try living our lives again...together."

Harry grinned again.

Sirius picked up where Selene left off, "We both know how much you want a family, and we would like very much to offer you a home, but..." Harry's grin vanished, he didn't think he liked where this was headed. "we have none to offer you," Sirius said.

"Harry, if the ministry has not already found out about me they soon will." Selene said, "and Madam Pomfrey told me that there are already rumors circulating about Sirius being at Hogwarts. I'm afraid that at this point living with us would only put you in greater danger."

"I don't care!" Harry said, "You don't understand what it is like living with the Dursley's! They hate me. They truly hate me. I want to go with you, I want to have a real family!"

Selene stopped walking and knelt down in front of Harry. "We want that too Harry, more than anything. All we ask is that you are patient with us and allow us a little time to build you the home and family that you deserve."

Sirius knelt down beside Selene, "What we offer you Harry, is the promise of a home. I know that we are not what one would consider a "normal" family, but we would like the opportunity to be your family."

Harry didn't care much about being normal. He had never been considered so, and the Dursley's were a normal family. He was tired of "normal". Selene and Sirius were something better, they were *his* family. He hugged both of them at one time, and it was a long time before the three let go of each other. Finally Sirius said, "Harry, it looks as if Ron and Hermione have tracked you down. I'm sure Ron has lots of things he wants to tell you. Why don't you go talk to them, we'll be here when you get back.

Harry ran to catch up with his two best friends, feeling for the first time that all the pieces of his life were finally coming together.

~ Fini. ~


There it is ladies and gentlemen the end to "Family Tree." I hope that you have enjoyed the story. I sure enjoyed writing it. I also hope that I left enough little tidbits and foreshadowing to entice you to read the next part of Harry and Selene's story, which I will begin to post hopefully at the beginning of next month. Before you say good-bye to "Family Tree" please feel free to leave a little review.

Speaking of reviews... A big THANK YOU to all of you who have reviewed my story. You really have made my first fanfiction experience a good one! Special thanks goes to Luna Rose/Phoenix Child, star queen, Nuts, and Kate Potter, for their constant support and reviews. (I wish I could list everybody but I think this chapter is long enough as it is.)

Blatant shameless plug: If you are a big Sirius fan, you might want to check out my soliloquy, "Sirius' Response." It is Sirius with a bit o' Shakespeare thrown in. (I'm rather proud of it, so I bring it up whenever I possibly can.:) )

**Update 11/24/02: For illustrations and music for this story, head on over to**