Can't Have It Both Ways
Disclaimer: JKR owns Harry Potter, I write purely for fun and it's free. Anyone wishing professional standards of writing should go and buy one of her books. (The earlier ones are by far the best!)
Breakfast next morning was a noisy but happy affair as Harry was brought up to date with everything that had been happening during his stay in bed. Remus, and Sirius both had classes to teach so they made arrangements to meet tonight after dinner. Invitations were sent out to the Diggorys, Bulstrodes and Barchoke, they would retire to the library after Dobby and Winky spoiled them again with a sumptuous meal.
The numbers meeting in the library were increased to twelve with the inclusion of Hermione. Harry's comment of, "She will bear the Potter heirs so she needs to be here,' pleased the young witch on so many levels.
Barchoke brought the assembled company up to speed on what steps they had taken to secure the article. "It currently sits in our highest security vault, I have a few suggestions on how to increase that security but would like to hear what everyone else has to say first."
Sirius thought the answer was simple, "Why don't we just destroy it? Muggle explosives? Drop it into a volcano? Something it couldn't survive!"
Sal hissed and Harry translated, "If we destroy the sword or stone, it will release Voldemort. The magic involved in creating his prison should render it pretty indestructible but I wouldn't like to chance it. The only way to kill him would have been to complete the ritual as the rat intended, let Voldemort get a body and then kill him. That task is a lot easier to say than do!"
Harry could see from the looks he was receiving that option didn't appeal to anyone sitting here either. "We've effectively trapped him like a genie in a bottle, we now have to kept that bottle safe and unopened."
Amos shook his head, "Any ideas I had focused on destroying the bloody thing, knowing that will have the opposite effect of what we want leaves me with nothing to bring to the table."
Claude had obviously been giving the problem a lot of thought as well. "I like the idea of having it locked away, rather than dropping it in the deepest part of the ocean. If the pressure cracked the stone he would escape. What we need here is layers of security to enhance the protection even Gringotts can offer."
Barchoke was impressed with the Frenchman's reasoning, it exactly matched his own. "The strongest protection we at Gringotts offer are blood wards. As with the sword, only a customer whose blood matches exactly would be able to open the vault."
They all liked the idea but who to choose, everyone there had children at present or hoped for them in their future. This was a burden they didn't want hanging around their family's neck. Barchoke continued, "If I may, I would like to offer myself as the keeper of the door. My wife died young before having any offspring and we goblins mate for life. I am the last of my line and when I pass, the door would be sealed forever."
Marko could see the logic behind this, "So the article is practically indestructible, the vault can only be opened by Barchoke and the sword needs a Potter to remove it. Add to that it's probably in the most secure part of Gringotts and nobody outside this room even knows it exists and I think we may have the layers that Claude was looking for."
It was a measure of how far this group had come that the thought of this dangerous artifact being effectively in goblin control didn't worry them in the slightest. They had fought alongside Barchoke and trusted the goblin implicitly, this indeed looked their best option.
"I would like a few of you to be present when I seal the vault."
Harry interrupted Barchoke, "I don't want to be anywhere near that vault, in fact I think we should erect wards that specifically prevent Potters from getting anywhere near that vault."
Barchoke agreed, "That can be done easily Harry, now about that other business…"
"My mind is made up Barchoke. I publicly gave my word and I am delighted, as well as honour bound to keep it. This is the way it has to be."
Barchoke appeared resigned and handed Gringotts envelopes to the entire company, apart from Harry and Hermione.
Sirius was not amused when he opened it, "Harry, what the hell is this?" There was undisguised anger in his voice.
"It's simple really, I offered a hundred thousand galleon reward for the capture of Peter Pettigrew. You lot captured him therefore I am honour bound to pay it. Please don't be insulted, I did the same for Hermione with her share of the Basilisk gold. Give it to charity if you must Sirius but that gold was placed in a separate vault specifically for this purpose, the goblins have to pay it out. Barchoke's objection was that he didn't want a share, he was there and fought well so of course he deserves a share."
The Bulstrodes and Krums were not wealthy families. With a combined twenty thousand between them and living in Bulgaria, Marko and Victor could make a lot of changes to their lives. Graham kept staring at the paper in front of him, ten thousand was enough to take the financial worry out of life for his family and enable him to spoil the two Bulstrode ladies.
Remus was also about to object when Harry headed him off. "I would have been happy to see that money go to some stranger for capturing the rat, I'm delighted to present it to my friends instead. I just hope Amos here doesn't think I'm trying to bribe him?" This got them seeing the funny side of this and ended their objections.
Amos was now laughing, everyone in Magical Britain knew of the reward for Pettigrew, just as they knew who had captured him. He didn't think there would be a problem over this. "Oh Harry I will of course declare it and probably give some of it to charity, I think Tabitha deserves a good holiday this year though."
"I'm working on that sir so please don't go making arrangements just yet," this drew looks from around the room. "What? I want to spend at least some of the summer with my friends and you will all be invited. We just haven't worked out any details yet."
The minister for magic could only shake his head. "You, Mr Potter are something else! I don't suppose you have any ideas to rescue the disaster this bloody tournament has become? The other two schools are going home and their champions are desperate for any excuse to stay."
"As a matter of fact sir I have."
Sirius hid his face in his hands, "Last time he did this I ended up head of Slytherin, Merlin only knows what he'll come up with this time!"
When they heard the idea it was quickly expanded upon until everyone was excited, now all they had to do was sell it to McGonagall. Most of them in the library knew that was going to be an incredibly easy task.
Minerva McGonagall addressed the packed great hall, "Now that you have enjoyed your dinner, I will answer the question of why Miss Delacour and Mr Krum are still at Hogwarts after their schools left. Due to bad planning and even worse security, the tri-wizard tournament became a disaster. Whoever thought staring at the Black Lake for an hour would be exciting needs fired!"
"He already has been," was shouted out from Professor Black.
"Now the castle's owner has been working closely with the goblins and the major Quidditch suppliers to support a new initiative that was scheduled to begin next year. I'd like to introduce you to representatives from Nimbus, Golden Arrow, Firebolt and the French company Vitesse."
The applause inside the great hall was thunderous, these people were regarded by the students as representing some of the most important companies in their world.
"Our champions of course need no introduction and I'll now hand you over to the minister of magic to give out the details."
Amos knew he couldn't lose. He had a captive audience and he would be telling them things they wanted to hear, it didn't get any better than that for a politician. "Quidditch is a wonderful sport that focuses young people's minds and generates countless emotions. Come to think of it, that's not restricted to young people. I get such a thrill watching Hufflepuff play and knowing they have the best seeker in the school."
This generated some laughter but Cedric's answer of, "Gee dad, thanks! I think you're the best minister currently in the school as well," had everyone laughing.
"What we want to do is to encourage more young people to play, so starting in September there will be a Hogwarts Junior league for students of third year and below." This definitely had them cheering until Amos had to hold up his hands for quiet. "The people that you see beside me have all agreed to sponsor one of the houses, supplying all the equipment needed for playing Quidditch."
Amos just let them go this time, the students were standing on their seats and cheering like mad.
It took some time to regain control but the students wanted to hear what was coming next."Now to get things started we are holding a competition weekend where each of the champions will be allocated a house to select and coach their junior team. You are all well aware of our three seekers potential but I would like to point out that Miss Delacour's knowledge of the game and skill on a broom is certainly a match for any of them. It is only her Veela heritage that prohibits her playing the game competitively."
This was a surprise to the hall, quite a few had Fleur classed as a 'dumb blond' though it was obvious her fellow champions didn't think so.
Amos then produced three bowls and explained the procedure, "The first bowl contains the name of the champions, the second will be the house they will coach while the third has the company who will sponsor that house. Rather than having fancy flames spitting out names of students who didn't enter, I thought we would just keep it simple. Miss Gabrielle Delacour if you please."
Gabi was sitting with Hermione and Luna before coming forward and drawing out the first name. "Harry Potter."
"Nice to be out first for a change!" he joked.
When the next bowl provided 'Slytherin', everyone held their breath for a moment until the Slytherin table started cheering. Tracy, Daphne and Millie were dancing and waving at the twins while chanting "We got Potter! We got Potter!" Much to the delight of the older students who remembered Harry's sorting.
When the third bowl produced 'Firebolt', brand-new Firebolt brooms, uniforms and equipment appeared on the Slytherin table and the entire house erupted. Harry and the company representative went over and sat with the delighted students.
The other three tables were now eagerly awaiting their house being drawn, after having seen what was on offer.
Gabi was smiling as she drew her sister's name, that smile broadened when Fleur was allocated Gryffindor house as they probably knew more students in that house than the other two that were left. When Gabi then drew 'Vitesse', her smile illuminated the massive room.
Romilda wasn't a happy second year, she wasn't sure if her potential boyfriend was drooling over the beautiful French Veela or the beautiful French racing brooms. Her problem being he wasn't drooling over the precocious thirteen-year-old. She stood up to attract the minister's attention before the draw proceeded any further.
"Excuse me minister, but are we supposed to help this French woman beat our Harry? That doesn't seem fair."
Hermione just acquired an instant and intense dislike of the girl. "Fleur Delacour happens to be one of me and MY Harry's best friends, we expect Gryffindor house to embrace this fabulous opportunity that it's being presented with."
"But Hermione, you know we've been trying to embrace Fleur since she got here."
George of course agreed with his twin, "Yes but she keeps laughing at us and turning us down."
"Wait George, you're getting us mixed up with Ron, Fleur just turns us down."
The twins had moved, creating a space for Fleur and the representative from Vitesse to sit, the fact that the rep was young, female and gorgeous had nothing to do with it.
"Miss, this whole thing was Mr Potter's idea and that's exactly what he expects Gryffindor to do. The representative from Nimbus has just reminded me that I didn't mention it's not just the junior teams the four companies are supporting, the senior teams will all receive brand-new equipment as well."
The resulting cheering meant Romilda was instantly forgotten about, even by her potential boyfriend. The plan to get herself noticed had backfired on the young girl.
When Victor was assigned to Hufflepuff with Nimbus sponsorship, Cho was ecstatic. You didn't need to be in Ravenclaw to deduce that they were getting Cedric and Golden Arrow. This could be the chance she needed to get back with the handsome champion, he would surely need someone from Ravenclaw to help him coach the younger Claws. Miss Chang couldn't wait to volunteer for extra practice drills.
Minerva watched as the announcements had her whole school buzzing with the excitement and enthusiasm that Albus had hoped for with his flaming goblet. It just reinforced what the headmistress already knew, it wasn't about flashy packaging but more to do with the product inside. She'd discovered the last task was supposed to be a giant maze, hundreds of people sitting watching hedges would have been wonderful entertainment. Now the four champions could give full rein to their friendly rivalry and have some fun while the younger students had a fantastic opportunity. All four had asked that the prize money be donated to the families of the mermen that were murdered by Pettigrew, which had made her proud to know these fine young champions. They alone were solely responsible for engineering something good out of the shit tournament Albus had lumbered them with.
She noticed her guest of honour couldn't seem to take his eyes off Harry, Barchoke was apparently smiling though Minerva couldn't be sure. "He really is a remarkable young man, isn't he?"
"You have no idea headmistress, and that's probably for the best."
"Barchoke, you can't just say that and not follow it up, that would be cruel!" Minerva's smile told the goblin there was no malice in her words.
"Think of the group who went to rescue the Weasley boy, some of them had never even met the lad before. They went because Harry was going and they refused to let him go alone. Everyone in Harry's home wanted to go, all his friends and especially Dan Granger but they realised they would have been a hindrance."
The goblin was deep in thought for a moment. "Leaving his betrothed behind showed a level of maturity that surprised even me, it hurt him but was the correct decision. In all honesty Harry was also too young to be there but seems to have an inner strength he can call on in times of need. He has a heart bigger than anyone I've ever met and always tries to do the right thing. His friends are incredibly loyal an even their parents have fallen under his spell. There are a group of mothers from different countries, never mind walks of life, who are forming close friendships based on their charges. Could you imagine six months ago that the mother's of Miss Bulstrode and Miss Granger could be friends?"
Minerva couldn't imagine it now, never mind six months ago.
"That young man has been the catalyst for change in our world and I am more proud than I can say to have played a small part in it. Look around you, Merlin you don't even have to look because you can feel the change. The entire castle appears charged with positive energy, you have played your part in this Headmistress but it all started with Harry Potter."
She couldn't help but smile at the memory of Harry calling Albus a shit headmaster, Barchoke was right in that it began with Harry. It was now up to everyone though to take what they had and move forward with it, she would resign before allowing Hogwarts to slip back to the way it was. The amazing thing though was that it wasn't just Hogwarts. With an honest minister, the goblin nation being trusted as friends rather than feared and a newspaper that told the truth, their entire world had changed for the better. Harry Potter had played a major part in all of the above.
Amos had pulled Harry aside for a quiet word. "Dumbledore is insisting on speaking to you before his trial. Apparently he has some big secret to tell you that's going to make everything all better."
"That must be some bed time story if it's going to end happy ever after, what would you suggest sir?"
Amos was touched that Harry trusted him enough to ask his advice. "Well I would suggest you get used to calling me Amos, I don't see how it could hurt to talk to him. The old coot always played his cards far too close to his chest, he may have information that can help us."
"Ok I'll come to the ministry tomorrow. Who knows, the old man might even tell the truth for once."
Harry and Hermione walked into the interview room where Dumbledore was waiting on them, "I'm sorry Harry but I must insist on speaking to you alone."
"Ok," he said before turning to Hermione and leading her back out the door, "Let's go and get some ice cream so our trip won't have been a total waste of time."
Dumbledore was nonplussed, "Harry?"
"Let me make it as plain as I can old man, your days of insisting anything with me are over. I got a message you had something to tell me. I'm here so talk or we're gone."
"Fine but first you must tell me what happened with Voldemort, I understand you stabbed him with the sword of Gryffindor. Did he have a body? Where did he get it from?"
"That information is on a 'need to know' basis, you don't need to know. Start talking or we're out of here."
"Very well Harry, I think you will change your mind about a lot of things when you hear this. Everything I have done has been for your benefit and I know Miss Granger here is a very smart girl. She'll soon realise you'll have to break off this betrothal and train with me to face your destiny."
Albus mistakenly took their shocked silence as acceptance and continued his tale, "Before you were born a prophecy was made concerning you and the dark lord. Originally it could have indicated another but that scar on your head marks Harry Potter as the chosen one in more ways than you know."
The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches...Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies...and the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not...and either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives...
The silence that followed was shattered to smithereens as Hermione's temper exploded all over Dumbledore. "You stupid old bastard, you ruined my Harry's life over a piece of illiterate mumbo-jumbo that could have thousands of interpretations…"
Albus stood his ground, "It is quite specific, 'Either must die at the hand of the other…"
A raging Hermione cut him off, "For neither can live while the other survives. What the fuck do you think Harry's been doing for the last fourteen years? Granted you did your best to ensure he didn't have much of a life but he is most definitely alive."
Harry was in awe of Hermione, he'd never seen her like this before. Squaring-up to the most powerful wizard in the country and ready to rip his whiskers out by the roots with her bare hands. It was the swearing though that really alerted him to just how angry his betrothed was, that comment about breaking off their relationship must have triggered something deep within her.
For Hermione it was like drawing back the curtains to reveal a bad play, more like a Greek tragedy with Harry being cast in the leading role by producer / director Dumbledore. She could see it all playing out in her mind like a series of acts and could only come to one conclusion. "You've planned out his whole life haven't you? What's the final scene in this production of yours? Harry dies a tragic death, ridding the world of Voldemort? While his mentor and only confidant Albus Dumbledore weeps over the body, proclaiming loudly that it should have been him lying there?"
Albus had just admitted Hermione was very smart but her insight and brilliance here caught him off guard, both teens could see it written all over his face that Hermione had come a lot closer to the truth than Albus thought was possible.
Harry wrapped his arms around Hermione, while glaring at Dumbledore. "Listen carefully old man, there is more chance of Vernon Dudley running the London Marathon this year than there is of Hermione and I splitting up. Not going to happen! Voldemort is after me? That's hardly a shocking revelation. As Hermione here so eloquently pointed out, I am living so either Voldemort's dead or your prophecy is a load of hippogriff shit. If Voldemort comes back, my friends and me will deal with him. You would have me cut myself off from everything that makes life worth living and be solely under your control, it leaves me wondering why?"
"Harry I am far older and wiser than you, there has to be an element of trust here…"
Hermione was struggling in Harry's arms to get her wand on Dumbledore, her worship of authority figures long gone. "Over my dead body you old bastard! Where was this wisdom when you employed Voldemort to teach us or there was a Basilisk bigger than a bus roaming freely around Hogwarts? I will gladly place my life in Harry's hands; I wouldn't trust you to make me a cup of tea. There's no telling what you would put in it!"
"This ends here old man. As Hermione said we don't trust you, why the hell should we? The next and last time we see you will be at your trial, we are putting forward every charge we can. You had no right to interfere with my life as you are neither parent nor guardian, just a meddling old man who couldn't keep his crooked nose out of things that didn't concern him. It's such a pity that's the way history will remember you, does anyone remember what a brilliant Hogwarts student Tom Riddle was?"
Harry led a still raging Hermione out the door. He had no idea what this power he was supposed to have could be, but reckoned he might need it to save his skin if her temper was ever directed at him.
Albus just sat there, if Hermione had set about him with a beater's bat she couldn't have done anymore damage. He'd played his last card and not only been trumped, he'd been kicked from the table. Albus had been a player for well over a century, to have his arse handed to him like that by two kids really hurt. Not a word was spoken by Albus as he was led back to his cell, there was nothing left to say.
There was nothing left to say at Privet Drive either, the removal men had just taken the last of their belongings onto the truck. Dudley receiving a pig's heart through the letter box on Valentine's Day, that proved to be the final straw for the Dursleys The accompanying card proclaimed it was to match his tail.
This meant that either their neighbours knew about Dudley's affliction from that giant buffoon or the freaks were taunting them. The only choice left open to the Dursleys was to move house.
They were going to have to live in a furnished flat while waiting on their house selling, before discovering how much money they had to buy a new home. Normally houses on this estate sold very quickly, but their recent run of bad luck had seen number four buck that trend. The black grass and shrubs didn't bloody help either, they had new turf laid to replace the back lawn only to have it turn black by the next morning.
Their only crumb of comfort was that they had no intention of leaving a forwarding address. Thoughts of the freak boy turning up at number four, with his trunk and bird to find someone else living there was the only thing that could bring a hint of a smile to their faces.
That Harry was incredibly wealthy and could quite easily have bought the entire estate without putting a dent in his vault escaped their grasp of the situation. They also had no way of knowing that the young wizard had decided immediately after being recognised as an adult that he would never set foot in Privet Drive again.
Dumbledore's trial was like a three ringed circus but with Amelia as the ringmaster it ran very smoothly. To prove the prosecutions case for reckless endangerment of children entrusted to his care, she started with bringing a magical artifact that he admitted the dark lord was desperate to get his hands on into a castle full of children. To then place deadly traps with only a verbal warning between the students and a Cerberus was at least negligent. Compounding the matter by employing the dark lord to teach defence was utter madness.
Amelia moved on to the following year. With the knowledge the chamber of secrets had been opened before and a student had died as a result, the headmaster had done nothing to protect the children trusted to his care. Thanks to the Quibbler everyone had now seen pictures of what petrified four students and saw another having to be rescued from the chamber by Harry Potter. Amelia left the Wizengamot chamber in no doubt that the school should have been closed after the first child was petrified. Leaving the students in what was clearly an extremely dangerous environment and could easily have resulted in many deaths was reckless endangerment.
Albus sat and listened as Amelia built a rock solid case against him. With Harry also pressing charges over his attempted interference in the Potter betrothal, Azkaban was always going to be his new residence. It wasn't until Albus had the time to sit and reflect on what he'd become that he had his epiphany, it was said confession was good for the soul, he would soon find out.
Amelia was stopped in mid-flow as Albus suddenly stood up, "I think we've heard enough Amelia, you have made your case very eloquently. I will admit to possessing information that could negate this through extenuating circumstances but I won't bore you with it today. Instead I will ask you to forgive an old man whose pride and arrogance led him to assuming he alone knew better than everyone else. It took two extraordinary teenagers to highlight the error of my ways." He spotted Harry and Hermione in the chamber and directed his remark to them, "Thank you both for so articulately highlighting the error of my ways, and so giving me the opportunity to change them."
Albus turned his attention back to an opened mouthed Amelia, "It is my intention to leave these shores forever and spend the remainder of my life working to redeem the name of Dumbledore."
Amelia shook herself back to reality, "Excuse me Albus, did you just plead guilt too all the charges? I really don't remember the suggestion you just mentioned being offered as a solution?"
"Ah Amelia, I just couldn't see myself sitting in Azkaban when there is so much good I can do in the world. You have my word you will never see me again." Albus held his hand above his head as if he was making an oath as a flash of flame had him out of there before anyone had time to react.
With all the security surrounding the trial it was an embarrassment to the ministry that Albus had escaped so easily. They just had to tell the truth, there simply was no security against a phoenix!
Albus Dumbledore's dramatic exit in a blaze of glory had ensured his name would be remembered in history, and indeed the myth would eventually become greater than the man. Lodged at the back of everyone's mind was the thought, if he could flash out of there, who knew where he could turn up next?
It was this thought, amongst others, that had Hermione sneaking into her betrothed's bedroom.
Harry was just beginning to slip off to sleep when he felt her body spoon into his, "Hermione, have you any idea the trouble we could get into for this?"
"I couldn't sleep Harry for thinking of Dumbledore."
"Not exactly what I wanted to hear Hermione, kind of kills the mood you being in my bed was generating."
A slap to the back of the head was accompanied by a noise demonstrating her disgust at his comments. "You may have just killed any chance of even getting kissed tonight. I'm worried that he's still out there and may try to interfere with our lives again."
Harry rolled over and pulled her into his arms. "Godric said the only way Fawkes would have saved his ancient arse was if he truly repented what he's done and was determined to make amends. The best way for him to do that is to stay out of our lives forever. Both he and Sal figure the old goat's headed somewhere they've never heard the name Dumbledore. Can you imagine the impact he would make flashing into a magical village deep in some jungle with Fawkes on his shoulder?"
Hermione could see Harry's point, "He would be Emperor Albus before the week was out. Does this mean we're not changing any of our plans?"
"If our plans include the Quidditch tournament, a long, lazy holiday with our friends, a visit to Charlie's dragon reserve and the small matter of becoming engaged then there is no change there."
This earned Harry a kiss that curled his toes, Hermione had to ask her question twice before he could answer. "Do you think you'll win the competition?"
"It's not about the winning, its showing them what the game of Quidditch is all about and allowing them to appreciate and love the sport."
Hermione just continued to stare into his eyes, "Ok, so we're going to beat the stuffing out of them. Millie and Victor have some sort of side-bet going on, the details of which I don't want to know, but she says it's imperative that we win."
This set Hermione off with a bout of the giggles, "Did you know Cedric has made Luna his assistant coach?"
"I didn't know Luna was that into Quidditch?"
"Oh she's not, it was the only way Cedric could get any peace from Cho following him around like a lost puppy. Luna's his bodyguard! Fleur laughed her head off before having to get Colin to do the same job for her in Gryffindor. Do you need a bodyguard Mr Potter?"
Hermione was loosening the buttons on his pyjama top as she spoke, "Only from you love!" He tried to change the subject before they got carried away, "I was thinking we could all get together at the villa in Cyprus for the start of the holidays, Victor begins training in August so that would give us July together."
"What about the Weasleys? I will not put up with Ron for a month and, to be perfectly honest, my mum can only stand Molly for a short period before wanting to strangle the woman for the way she treats you. When I told her that by my reckoning you'd spent a total of five weeks your entire life at the Burrow she was shocked. I've only been there the once for the world cup and Molly acts as if she's known me all my life, it's the trying to run our lives that mum really objects to."
"I wouldn't want the twins and Ginny to miss out though I agree about Molly. What if we asked them for part of the month? I don't see anyway she would let them out of her sight for longer that that."
"She might have to focus those beady eyes on Ronald, Ginny caught him leaving a broom closet with Miss Vane. That girl is an accident waiting to happen, she's not nearly as grown up as she pretends to be and I just can't see Ron being the responsible one in any relationship."
"Now she's talking about another boy, real mood killer!"
She kissed away any objections, "What I really wanted to talk to you about was becoming engaged sooner. I know you want to place another ring on my finger first but watching you leave to face Voldemort frightened the life out of me. Watching Dumbledore escape today brought it all back at full force, I don't want to wait any longer Harry."
Hermione was playing with his hair while staring into his eyes, praying that he wasn't disappointed with her. "You have been the perfect gentleman Harry and I so want that other ring on my finger, I guess you really can't have it both ways."
Harry kissed her gently on the lips, "What if I told you that your ring was in the drawer of my bedside cabinet and I would love to slip it on your finger right now?"
"Then Mr Potter, my answer would be yes. Yes to anything you ask me."
Harry's hand immediately shot out to open the drawer.
A/N I think this is as good a place as any to leave this story.
As always, thanks for reading