Title: Judging innocence (8/8)
Author: Fabs G.
Summary: After an unpredictable twist of fate, Sirius finally gets a trial… and everyone is called to testify….
Rating: PG-13 (for some swearing)
Disclaimer: Everything is JK Rowling's! All I own here is the plot and Daily prophet reporter Methilda Shotclear, Matilde Pettigrew, Normal Lathren, Questioner Andrae, and in this chapter, Nelly.
A/N: I swear I tried not to make it a Remus and Sirius slash. I did. I think I succeeded. It took a lot of swearing from my part, but I think I did. Enjoy. Review!
Chapter 8: Scary Perfection
URIC THE ODDBALL PLAZA, July 20th, 7.46pm
Now that Harry was thinking about it, he had never been to a wizarding square. It didn't surprise him much now that he was in one though. The only odd thing –but that seemed perfectly normal to everyone- was that the statues weren't quiet on their little platforms. They walked all around and across the plaza, some were trying to sunbathe, and some were working on the trees and flowers. Uric the Oddball was happily talking to a tree. The tree, of course, did not talk back.
The afternoon had been somewhat chaotic. They said goodbye to the Weasleys, although they would see them later that afternoon, and everyone set out to either buy or try their best robes.
A ceremony was a ceremony, and that, implied dress robes.
When his mother told him, Ron grunted thinking that he'd have to wear his dress robe in public, but luckily for him, the twins had gone shopping the past week with Harry's thousand galleons, and in the meantime bought their youngest brother a beautifully decent dress robe. They were planning on giving it to him as a start-of-the-term gift, but the occasion proved to be worthy and, as they wrote to Harry that very same day, Ron's ears went scarlet when he saw the robes and, what probably was a first in his life, he hugged them both.
But things at the Lupin house had been worst. As Harry reflected just before the ceremony began, the afternoon hadn't been somewhat chaotic. It had been chaotic, period.
If Ron and his dress robes had made a fit, it was nothing compared to what Sirius did when he had to use dress robes. Apparently, Sirius had never been too fond of the long robes and cloaks, so getting him in a dress robe was hectic. At school, Remus told him, whenever he wasn't in classes, he wore muggle trousers and t-shirts, and this sometimes included lunch and dinner.
Luckily for Harry, Remus had experience with this. He claimed to have been the only one who convinced him to wear true dress robes for their 7th year Halloween ball, and judging by the stubbornness Sirius was showing, he would need his old techniques back.
"I am not going to wear that Moony, stop it. I am a free man now, and also, free to wear what I please!" As Sirius said the word 'free' the inevitable wide grin that had been in their faces all afternoon was born yet again.
Harry watched amused the scene in the sitting room as Remus shoved into Sirius' hands his new dress robes. There was an hour left till the ceremony.
"It's a wizarding ceremony, Sirius! You'll be the only one in muggle clothes! You'll stand out!"
"So? I already will, I'm the one they're asking for forgiveness" He liked to call it 'forgiveness' and not 'pardon'.
"Fine, fine you win. Wear whatever you want to wear." He smiled at Harry in a prankish way that Harry was soon getting accustomed to, a smile that would have made anyone else so nervous, it should be banned. Apparently Remus hadn't given up yet. "But bear in mind, that your Daily Prophet devotee will be there for sure. Remember in school, what wizarding girls that had never cared much about muggle clothes would do when you wore those jeans and t-shirts?"
"They'd swarm me like damn bees. Once I had to throw a hex to be able to walk. Although they were trying to invite to the ball…"
"Exactly. Imagine Methilda Shotclear, in her mid-50s, who publicly declared herself as being your fan, seeing you in that kind of outfit" Harry had the sudden image of a Mrs. Weasley type of woman sticking to Sirius closer than his own shadow did.
Remus seemed to have made his point crystal clear. Harry watched as Sirius seriously considered the robes and after about 10 seconds, tossed them back to Remus. "Perfect. It'll give her enough to write about for tomorrow's edition" And he left the sitting room, going upstairs to pick the best muggle clothes he had bought that afternoon.
A bell interrupted Harry's train of thoughts. A witch was ringing a bell, making everyone go silent. He was sitting in the front row of what were about 10 rows of large, church-styled seats. To his left was sitting Remus, and to his right were Hermione, Ron and the rest of the Weasleys.
In the back rows, where Dumbledore, Hagrid, McGonagall, and Flitwick. Everyone was smiling widely.
Cornelius Fudge, his face showing no particular emotion, climbed to the small platform in front of them and magickally enhanced the volume of his voice with his wand.
"Wizards and witches, we are here this afternoon to officially grant pardon to one of our kind. Someone who has been misjudged for thirteen years. Although the verdict has already been given and he is free, this ceremony is celebrated so he will legally get his personal belongings back and any paperwork that he might need. Mr. Black…"
Sirius climbed to the platform from Fudge's right, his growing hair perfectly combed, his face with the widest of smiles (though certainly not at Fudge) and of course, dressed in his brand new black jeans, a very white and slightly tight t-shirt that emphasized his biceps and a pair of black boots. For Sirius, black wasn't only a name, it was an attitude. Cameras flashed madly at him, maybe a little too madly.
Harry caught Hermione and Ginny gaping scandalously at him. Both of them turned very red when they noticed Ron and Harry looking at them. To be honest, even Mrs. Weasley gaped slightly at how handsome Sirius looked, but as she was a married woman, Harry thought it best not to brood about it.
"Mr. Black, when we imprisoned you, we locked these in the Ministry's' evidence room." Fudge gave Sirius a stack of photographs (which Sirius tossed to Harry saying they were for him, and Harry happily saw they were all from his mother and the marauders), some robes, watches and notebooks, and finally, Fudge gave Sirius his wand.
Sirius tossed the things to Remus ("Catch'em!") so he could receive his wand with both hands. He took it in his hands and, after 13 years of not touching it, the wand shook violently and threw black and white sparks to the air. Sirius smiled at his wand and kissed it as he whispered "my dear!"
"Mr. Black there is something else we've held in our power for all these years, but we cannot give it in your hands…" Sirius looked quizzically at Fudge. "Andrae, bring it please" Harry realized the witch who had rang the bell had been the trial's questioner.
Andrae climbed down from the platform and magicked something back onto it…
"My bike!" Sirius squealed in happiness and hugged his flying bike.
Andrae smiled at him "It has been approved by the ministry. You are also free to ride it"
"Before you continue to squeal in happiness, Mr. Black…" Fudge turned to a table behind him and started handing Sirius many parchments. "Although I doubt you'll need it, this is your freedom certificate… this is your old wizarding ID… this is a new one, an updated one… this are the titles to your old house, although by the state of it I recommend you hire a MagiArchitect as soon as you can… the certificate for your flying motorbike… and this, should you and Harry want it, are adoption papers. Except for the fact that they haven't been signed by you, they are perfectly legal"
There was a dead silence. Even the press seemed to understand the importance of the moment. Harry stared at the papers, nearly transfixed. All the Weasleys, Hermione and Remus was looking at Harry. Sirius looked at the papers and then at Harry, who shifted his gaze from the papers to Sirius' face. Without even thinking it, he nodded eagerly.
From his right, Fred's voice was heard ("Wingardium Leviosa!") and he sent a self-inking quill in Sirius' way. "Oy! Padfoot!"
Sirius caught it expertly and before signing it, looked again at Harry. He narrowed his eyes at him, silently asking him the obvious question. Harry limited himself to smile at him. From his left, Remus voiced what a little voice in Harry's head had been bellowing loudly "Stop beating about the bush and sign it already!"
The press' cameras flashed madly again as Sirius signed the adoption papers.
SIRIUS BLACK FREE!
HE WAS GRANTED FULL PARDON BY THE MINISTRY
HE LOOKED SPECTACULAR IN HIS CEREMONY, IF I MAY SAY SO
By Methilda Shotclear
[Today there were two pictures. The first one was, of course, of Sirius at the ceremony in his muggle outfit.
The second one had been taken from a different angle and managed to show the front row's smiling and
beaming faces as Sirius signed the adoption papers.]
Who would have thought? When I started working at the Daily Prophet, my first article ever was about Black's 1981 arrest and further Azkaban imprisonment. Twelve years later, I wrote about his historic escape from Azkaban, and now two years later I'm writing about his freedom ceremony! It feels like I've known him all my life.
Yesterday morning, Minister of Magic announced the final verdict the jury had reached after three days of coming and going declarations about Black. Not only is Sirius Black free, but he was granted full pardon!
The usual freedom ceremony was celebrated later that day in the evening on the Uric the Oddball Plaza, where yours truly was the only Daily Prophet correspondent. Black didn't show up in dress robes, as the rest did, but in oddly entrancing muggle clothes that made him look so attractive, he left the female audience literally gaping, myself included. As he later told us, even though having been raised in the wizarding ways, he's always liked much more the muggle clothes, and he looked delighted to finally, be able to wear a "decent pair of jeans a t-shirt." In the ceremony, Black was returned his personal belongings, including his original wand, which he bought when he was 10 years of age. What Black seemed to appreciate more than anything was his old flying motorbike, for which the ministry has allowed it's enchantment and is now permitted to fly.
Among the presents was the entire Weasley family, the Hogwarts headmaster, Albus Dumbledore and two of the professors; the gamekeeper, Rubeus Hagrid; and of course, Black's two closest people: his Hogwarts friend, Remus Lupin, and his godson, Harry Potter. Or shall we say… son?
As it is customary in freedom ceremonies, Black was also given his IDs and freedom certificates but C. Fudge also offered Black the opportunity to adopt his orphan godson, Harry Potter. Black and Harry exchanged meaningful glances and after Lupin told Black to "Stop beating about the bush and sign it already!" Black signed the forms, and in less that 5 minutes, Black was Harry's father.
When I mentioned this to them, both were very reluctant to call each other father and son, especially Black, whose loyalty to his friends has proven to be greater than death: "James was Harry's father. James is Harry's father. James will always be Harry's father. That will never change. I am merely Harry's godfather and now, the only one responsible for him to the law. That's it."
I approached Black, and asked him something that had been nagging me all day: What he planned to do now with his recently acquired freedom. Black thought for several seconds: "I haven't had time to think about it actually. In the immediate future, enjoy this last month of Harry's summer holidays, and give him the best birthday ever. We'll see after that." When I asked if he was planning on returning to his Auror training, Black's face went somber and quickly checked for his godson, relaxing visibly when he saw he was chatting with his friends. "You will probably see very soon. It's something along that same line of work, and I am sorry to say, that you will find out very soon" His face however, told me that this was not one of his jokes. It left me quite disturbed actually and, truth be told, my first thought was of You-Know-Who.
But, disturbing dead wizards aside, the evening proved to be one full of laughter and joy. When the ceremony ended, the Weasleys, Harry's friend Hermione Granger and Harry himself left to prepare a celebration at Lupin's house to celebrate Black's freedom. As for Black himself, he chose to take advantage of the dark night and left for his friend's house in his flying motorbike. When he winked my way, he looked like the happiest person I have ever seen.
Whatever you are planning to do in your future, Mr. Black, I feel truly glad we have you on our side.
July 31st, 1995
Life was so good now it was scary.
It had been 10 days since the verdict, and a week since they had gone to the Dursley's to pick up Harry's few belongings and no one had talked about moving from Remus' house. Of course, the only other possibility, and a ruled out for that, was Sirius' house, which needed heavy work on it. (Harry had visited it about three or four days after the Verdict day, and he was afraid it was going to fall down at any minute. Half an hour later, Sirius had hired a whole troop of MagiArchitects)
The trial had been short now that he looked at it from some distance, but the stress, nerves and worry Remus and him had gone through for Sirius had unknowingly brought Harry and Remus closer and past the professor-student barrier there had been in between before the trial.
The only time Harry thought about moving out of there and alone with Sirius, he found himself worrying about Remus. Sirius and Remus seem not only to want, but also to need to be near the other. Harry knew that they had gone through a lot together and separate, and after 13 years of thinking your friend is a betraying murderer and suddenly discovering he is innocent, must take its toll on someone's mind, so Harry chose not mention anything about the moving subject.
Plus, he was perfectly happy to be there. Sirius and Remus together were a sight worth to be watched. As Voldemort cut their younger years short and threw them into adulthood abruptly, they seemed to be catching up on that too, and there wasn't a day when they didn't remember an old prank and used Harry as the target, to later dissolve themselves into laughter.
Harry, having had a family life of zero love and zero fun, couldn't be happier about this.
But today had been so strange. It was already 5 in the afternoon and there had been no pranks. No "Do you remember the time when…?". No fun. No explosives.
No Birthday greetings.
Normally Harry would have thought it perfectly normal, as the Dursleys had always expertly ignored his birthday, but Harry reminded himself he was now living with Sirius and Remus, and this situation was extremely preoccupying.
They had acted like in a true normal day, everyone in their individual work. Harry had a huge pile of homework for Hogwarts, Remus had found a temporary job teaching a crippled but powerfully magical girl that came home everyday (she was very proud and insisted to come to Remus' home), and Sirius had left early in the morning, most probably to check how the things were going at his old house.
What was even more worrying, he hadn't received any birthday greetings from the rest of the 'world'. Harry had searched the skies for an owl from Hermione, or Errol or Pig or even Hermes, the Weasley's owls, or a Hogwarts owl from Hagrid, but the only thing that were in the skies today were some few scattered clouds and the blazing summer sun. Hedwig, meanwhile, was comfortably sleeping in her cage.
He checked out of the window once more and went downstairs, sick of writing for History of Magic, to check if he could help Remus and Nelly with anything, but shockingly, neither Nelly nor Remus were there. He went outside (maybe today Nelly was receiving a practical lesson) only to find the garden empty. He was about to go back inside when something caught his attention… a bottle brush tail slowly going under one of the bushes.
Harry pulled the bottlebrush tail to reveal a big ginger cat with a squashed face.
"Crookshanks! How on earth did you…?" And it hit him. If Crookshanks was here, at least Hermione had to be nearby. "Hermione?" he called, getting no answer. He called her again, but the only answer he got was Crookshanks' purring.
He turned around to check inside, but Crookshanks, with his paw, grabbed Harry's jeans, and walked in front of him, as if wanting to lead him. Harry looked at the cat for two seconds and then, shrugging, followed him all around the house, only to end up in front of the main door. Crookshanks just stood in front of it.
"Weird cat…" he muttered and he turned round to head to the back door. Crookshanks ran and placed himself in front of him, and hissed and spit.
Harry looked at the door, and back at the cat. "You seriously want me to knock on the door of an empty house when the back door is wide open?"
Crookshanks meowed happily, and Harry could not believe he was answering the demands of a cat. He went back to the door and, feeling utterly stupid, he knocked.
"There, see? No answer"
Surprisingly, someone from the inside said 'Alohomora!' and the door opened slowly and noiselessly.
Harry stepped in apprehensively, with Crookshanks beside him. It was so dark inside, one would have thought it was midnight and not 5:30pm. He squinted, trying to see anything at all, but failed. Suddenly, someone moved a curtain, and a thin streak of sun illuminated a fiery red head. Harry smiled.
"All right…" the door closed behind him "I saw a redhead, so I won't throw off a curse…" Someone giggled "But if you don't tell me who you are, I might throw a hex. Who's in here?"
It was some sort of explosion. Harry was sure of it. One second, everything was dark and silent, the next, everything was illuminated, the room fabulously decorated, and seven people screamed a Happy birthday worth of leaving anyone deaf.
He received the biggest group hug he had ever been given as Sirius, Remus, Ron, Hermione, Fred, George and Ginny hugged him at the same time, nearly leaving him breathless.
Harry could not believe how they had decorated the room in such short time, when he had been outside. He marveled at their speed. The room was blazing in colors, and a banner hanging from the ceiling read 'Happy 15th Birthday Harry' in Gryffindor-colored letters. In the center of the room stood a table full of gifts.
Sirius was practically beaming as Harry received everyone's greetings. When he was finished he crossed his arms over his worked-out chest and looked at him and couldn't stop an amazingly big smile from being born in his lips. "Suffered too much today?"
"Not only you didn't greet me" he stole a grin from Remus "But you disappeared for all the bloody day!"
"Language…" warned Sirius.
Behind him, Remus unsuccessfully attempted to stifle a laugh. "Look who's talking"
Sirius glared at him and then pulled Harry into the obligatory birthday hug. "Okay, birthday boy, go open your presents."
Harry sat in front of the gift table and grabbed the one he had closest. From behind, Sirius' hand snatched the present form his hand. "This one later"
Harry shrugged and grabbed another one, which happened to be Hagrid's. He opened it to find the 'New and Revised Fantastic beasts and Where to find them' (Very Special Edition.)
I bet this one is going to be real good, eh? Sorry I can't be there, Sirius invited me (He said it was almost obligatory for me to be there) but there's a lot of work around here, as you probably know. I'll go visit soon, though. I promise.
Don't take too lightly the book I sent you. Not only are we going to use it this year, but it's especially enchanted to, when you open it near an animal, it'll magically tame the animal for you to enjoy him. Don't try it with the XXXXX rated animals!
I'll see ya soon! You'll still be there in Remus' house, won't you?
All the best,
Harry smiled at Hagrid's letter and couldn't wait to try the book. But knowing everyone was.. wait... Harry reacted…
He looked at Sirius "You talked to Hagrid?!"
Sirius smiled. "Yeah, we settled some things, he asked my forgiveness about a hundred times, I told him it wasn't necessary about a thousand, and then I invited him." Harry thought of this as another birthday present.
Harry moved on to next gift. It had a small card that read "Happy Birthday! Love from, Hermione and Ginny" It was a small present, thick but barely the size of a common photograph. Harry tore the paper to reveal that it indeed, was a framed photograph.
Ginny spoke to him. "Place your hand over the glass. Place it again to stop it on any of them" Harry did so, and the picture started changing… Ron, Hermione and Harry at Hogwarts…. More of Ron and Hermione… The Sirius, Harry and Remus Daily Prophet photograph that had been taken during Hagrid's testimony… Sirius at his ceremony… His parents, when they were still at Hogwarts…. Sirius and Remus, when they were still at Hogwarts… Remus and Sirius in their animal alter-egos… and Remus, Sirius, James and Lily together, all four with their arms around each other… Harry placed his hand on it, and the picture froze. Harry's parents were concentrated one each other, oblivious of the two teenagers by their side, who were laughing happily at their friends' obvious love for each other. Harry looked at Sirius and Remus, who were deeply concentrated on the picture, smiling at it and each other as they probably remembered the occasion. He looked at Hermione and Ginny. "Thank you" Two simple words, but both girls got all the meaning there was to it.
Next came Ron's gift: The newly published 'The Seeker's Bible' by Roderick Plumpton. "Wow Ron!" He skimmed the book, and he could hardly tear his eyes of it to open the next present.
The next gift turned out to be Fred and George's (Happy Birthday Harry! Gred & Forge) It was a huge box, and Harry looked at it or a long while. "I'm actually scared of opening it" he looked at them smiling.
"Go on. I bet even they will enjoy it" said George, looking at Sirius and Remus.
Harry opened it, and gaped at its contents for a good while.
Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes of all kinds. It was going to be one fun year, the next one.
"Oh. My. God." He grabbed one of the fake wands and gave it a wave. In one second, he had his hand covered in green goo, and he hadn't even finished saying 'ew' that the goo evaporated.
Everyone broke into laughter.
"Thanks. I'll make good use of it…"
"We are sure of it…" smiled the twins.
From behind Harry, two hands appeared and launched themselves to the box. Harry slapped them both.
"No you won't. It's my birthday gift." Sirius and Remus seemed thoroughly disappointed
"But we'll make good use of it too!" said Sirius, trying to place an innocent look on his face. He failed.
"Yeah, you should know that better than anyone, Harry…" Remus smiled and beamed at him.
Harry glared at them mockingly "My legs still hurt" he said simply. Harry explained to the rest how yesterday Sirius wanted to know if he still 'had it' when it came to enchant stairs. It turns out he did. Remus helped him enchant the stairs so that one of the steps would disappear when you stepped on it. The curious thing was, they 'accidentally' forgot to tell Harry about it, and he ended up falling, literally, into the stairs. It looked like the stairs had sucked Harry's legs. Of course, they got him out eventually, but only after taking a couple of very good photographs.
"All right!" Remus stopped the explanation before it was turned into a flood of accusations. "It's time for my gifts"
Harry looked at him "You said 'gifts'?"
"I did" and he handed Harry two packets. One was long, a little thicker and shorter than a wand box. The other was square box, barely thicker Harry's hand.
He opened the long one first. It contained a simple-looking quill.
"Wait… don't say anything" Before Harry thought he had gone a little mad, Remus handed him a piece of parchment. He placed the parchment over the table, and the quill, which hanged over it on its own, over it. "Say anything."
"Anything" Harry hadn't finished saying the word that the quill had already finished writing. "Wow! That's my handwriting!"
"Yes. Not only is it self-writing and it's also quicker than you, it's also self inking. I had one like that when I was your age, great help when it's past midnight and you are still in the common room working."
Sirius looked at him, gaping "That's why you went to bed earlier than anyone else!"
Remus grinned at him "Hey, I needed the sleep!"
Sirius frowned "One day you started staying as late as anyone else. What happened?"
"Apparently James thought it unfair that I had such a help, so he unfortunately sat over it. It was crunched to bits." Sirius dissolved himself in fits of giggles.
Hermione spoke to the quill, and the quill wrote again, this time in Hermione's tiny handwriting. It did again for Ron's big handwriting, and Fred's oddly stylized one. Soon, everyone wanted one.
Harry moved on to Remus' second packet. (I believe Ron and Hermione will find a good use to it too. Happy Birthday, Harry.) He opened to find a piece of parchment. Wait…
"The Marauder's map!" Harry yelled, happy to see it again
"But McGonagall had it!" interrupted George
"Believe me, it took Sirius and I a lot of talking to convince Dumbledore to give back to us."
"In the end we convinced him telling him it was rightfully ours" interjected Sirius.
"Although, Harry" Remus and Sirius pushed Ron and Hermione from the table and sat at both sides of Harry "We've done a little work on it"
"Try opening it" Sirius was definitively enjoying this.
Harry took his wand and solemnly swore that he was up to no good. But the map did not 'open'
Everyone opened wide their eyes, Fred and George's a little terrified. All eyes were resting on either Sirius or Remus.
Sirius took Harry's wand and the map, and tapped it three times. "I solemnly swear I am about to pester someone" The map did open this time, and the old reliable was back again in front of everyone's eyes, although a little changed.
Messrs. Moony, Padfoot and Prongs
Purveyors of Aids to Magical Mischief Makers
For over 20 years
THE MARAUDER'S MAP
Harry looked at it and thought the change was good. He soon found Hagrid, Dumbledore, Snape, McGonagall, Filch, Fang and even Dobby and Winky.
"Sirius and I realized only yesterday, right after we got the map back that Snape now knows how to open it"
Harry grimaced "Of course! Awful situation it would have been…" he said, looking at the werewolf on his right. Remus smiled back and shook his head recalling. He had saved him from Snape once, and Harry would have been ready to bet Hedwig that it had taken all of Remus' might to hide his surprise at Harry having that map on his hands.
"So we thought you'd appreciate it to have it back changed, and also updated"
"Yeah, someone's membership expired" Said Sirius staring sadly at the map for one second and then beaming like before in the next. "So time for my gifts." Sirius tapped the map to close it ("Professor coming!") he waved the wand in the direction he had left the packet, neatly wrapped and with a beautiful bow and a card. Before handing it to Harry, he smiled at Remus. Should Harry expect another prank?
"Harry, do you know what a Realitizer is?" Ron, Ginny, Fred and George aaahed at him "Shush you"
He took the card and read it
First of all, Happy 15th Birthday!
It's probably just another birthday to you, but for me it's the first I can truly spend with you, so I wanted to give you something special. Two special somethings, actually. This is what I did today. I went to London, to Gringotts (where the goblins gave me the nastier look you could have gotten) and retrieved these from my vault. I put them there on 1981, just before my little pursuing.
I won't say 'hope you like them' because I know you will.
Harry opened the packet and found two things. One of them looked like a detached lens from a camera. The other was a book, scarlet and with two golden initials that were peeling off: 'JP' He opened it, under expectant surveillance not only from Sirius but from Remus as well.
Harry opened it and saw five different handwritings.
James Potter proudly presents
Hogwarts – years 1 thru 7
(In curly letters, glowing before the Hogwarts logo)
Sirius Black (Sirius had sign his name,
as had his friends)
A.k.a. The annoying girl magnet (James' handwriting again)
A.k.a. The annoyingly lovable prankster werewolf
A. k. a. The blonde rat
A.k.a. The astounding redhead (a little red heart had been drawn)
"Oh my God… Is it...?"
"You father's diary. Save it for bedtime reading. You'll have a good time"
Remus suddenly seemed to have remembered something "Sirius… what about…?"
"uuumm yeah. Harry you should know that I took the liberty to hide the entries James wouldn't have wanted you to read somewhere safe…"
"Of course" He very reluctantly put the dairy back in the box it had been before and picked up the detached lens. Before he could even ask what it was, everyone was moving. Someone pulled his chair back, with Harry still on it, and while Hermione and Ginny cleared the wall in front of him of pictures and clocks, Ron, Fred and George moved the table out of the way. Clearly, he was the only one who was lost.
Sirius put a finger to his mouth and took the lens, or rather Realitizer, and with Harry's wand made it hover in mid air, right in front of the wall. Sirius tapped it with the wand and said what had to be some kind of password "James Potter and his minions!"
As everyone began to settle down again, Harry with Sirius and Remus still at their sides, the Realitizer began to tremble violently. It glowed, and then threw a thick cloud of smoke to the air.
Harry first saw a head full of unruly hair, and for a moment he thought he was glancing at a mirror. The head turned out to be his father's as a 3D image of him emerged from the Realitizer, and behind him, Harry recognized the Gryffindor common room. He didn't seem a day older than 15. The resemblance was uncanny, and his friends gasped when they saw James. They glanced at James, who seemed to be talking to someone to his right, and at Harry, as if wanting to check if the smoky boy in front of them wasn't Harry himself.
James waved an impatient hand to his right. "Moony, stop it or I'll hex you!"
A smoky Remus appeared from James' right and placed himself in front of James, nose to nose. He too, looked 15. Remus and Sirius laughed at Remus' younger version. "Try"
James shuddered at his friend and backed up. "I hate it when you look at me like that! You could even scare Snape"
Remus smiled "Great idea!"
"Oy! Guys! Stop it!" a squeaky voice said. Pettigrew was behind the Realitizer.
A 15-year-old, muggle clothes-wearing Sirius appeared on James' left. Harry looked at Hermione and Ginny and their useless efforts at trying not to gape at him. They closed their mouths and giggled.
"Jamsie-boy… Remmy… Pete… everything ready?"
Three voices agreed. James and Sirius disappeared from view and Smoky Remus took the Realitizer from where it was and moved it. The other three boys were seen again, standing next to each other.
Sirius lifted up his left index finger and placed his other hand over his heart. "We are about to record a historic moment. What you are about to see will be known throughout generations, and all Hogwarts students will admire us for what we are: Heroes!" (Everyone laughed at him. Fred and George cheered)
James and Peter rolled their eyes at him. From behind the Realitizer, Remus voice told him to shut up and transform already.
The three boys shut their eyes. 1995-Sirius explained that they had been practicing for days, and that that was the first moment they truly transformed.
Peter transformed first. As he was so short, the rat nearly went out of sight.
Sirius transformed next, and the familiar black dog was now wagging his tail at Remus. James transformed next, and the most impressive stag appeared.
"Wow" It was the first time Harry saw his father transform. Or for that matter, the first time he saw his father for such a long time.
Smoky Remus seemed to have placed the Realitizer somewhere safe because he could be seen, gaping and smiling at them. He patted the dog's head (who placed his two paws in Remus' chest and licked his cheek), then patted the impressive stag, who moved his head up and down and then moved on to the rat.
From the Realitizer, a noise was heard, and in a second, James, Sirius and Peter were back human again. From behind them, a 15-year-old Lily Evans appeared, asked them what they were doing there at such an ungodly hour and Smoky Remus ran to turn the Realitizer off.
There were many like these. One of them showed Harry's mother studying in the library (obviously taken by James), the other showed a yellow-haired, 15-year-old Snape, and there was even one that showed Sirius and Remus wrestling in their canine forms.
The Realitizer was turned off an hour later, as Sirius and Remus claimed there were over 7 hours of filming in them. As everyone was nearly starving, they didn't complain.
Harry had the best birthday of his life, and the day soon gained its position as the best of his entire life. Remus and Sirius had prepared a huge cake, which exploded in everyone's faces, and then brought a second -and edible- one.
At about 10 o'clock, Mr. Weasley appeared in the fireplace, to pick up his sons and daughter and take Hermione to her house. Remus and Sirius, with Harry's help, cleaned everything that had been left from the party. None of them was feeling sleepy so they settled themselves for another hour and a half of Realitizer.
They went to bed at midnight, and as Harry was entering his room, he called to Sirius, who was entering to his own.
Sirius turned around and looked at his godson "Yeah?"
Harry smiled widely at him "It's not just another birthday"
Sirius smiled back, a grateful smile, a let out a sigh. Before any of them knew what was happening, Sirius had pulled Harry into a tight hug. They stood like that longer than any of them was accustomed to, feeling close the only family they had in the world.
They finally broke the embrace and Sirius ruffled Harry's head with his hand. "Goodnight Harry"
From the barely opened bathroom door, Remus spied the whole scene, and smiled at them. Everything had been perfect for days, but with that embrace, Remus felt for the first time that they could really face anything that might be coming in the future.
-*-*-*-*-*- The End! -*-*-*-*-*-
A/N: Did you enjoy?? Review!! :)