Beta: Shara Lunison
Pairings: HPLV, others
Warnings: Dumbledore bashing
Summary: Dumbledore knew before Harry Potter came to Hogwarts what he needed the boy to do, and he knew exactly how to make him do it. A twist on the normal manipulative!Dumbledore story.
Disclaim Her: I had a lot of trouble deciding what sort of memories I would put in the Pensieve. It sort of put this story on hold.
A/N: Sorry for the wait. As stated above, there was some trouble in figuring out which memories to go over. There was also a bit of my playing in other fandoms, and a long period of just not really wanting to write. I've also had trouble finding time to write, as my job and my sleep schedule don't agree. *sigh*
But, somewhere between your awesome reviews, the not so awesome 'are you ever going to update?' reviews and the AWESOME film Beastly, I found the time and the urge to write again.
At any rate, I'm quitting my job end of April and we'll be moving around then some time. I'll be looking for a new job and all, but with the way the economy is, I'm not expecting a hell of a lot. So I should have more time to write. *sweat*
HEADS UP! I changed the prophecy a bit, since I didn't like some of the wording. This has been edited in the prologue, just so no one decides to 'helpfully' point the inconsistency out to me. Or whatever.
Chapter Nine - Ghosts
Harry sat back on the couch in his room, eyeing the pensieve on the table in front of him. He'd had the damn thing for almost two weeks now and, after doing a fair bit of research on it, was finally comfortable using it. All he had to do, was decide what memories to watch.
Occlumency gave him the chance to recall memories, as he knew, but pensieves were able to go one step further: A memory placed in a pensieve could be watched from a third person view, allowing the person watching the memory to see everything. It was both a curse and a blessing.
Harry knew that he really wanted to watch memories of his parents, since the pensieve could give him more of the memories than the brief flashes he currently horded among his memory spheres, but he felt as though he should be using this gift for something more useful, such as learning magic that he'd seen others cast in the past, or studying past lessons in school, since his NEWTs would be soon – well, 'soon' as in, 'four months away', but the Death Eaters, Hermione's occasional owls and Voldemort seemed to think he should be studying for them right that minute, never mind that Harry wasn't worried about the damn tests, not with as much extra reading as he did.
Finally, Harry decided to do what he wanted first, and then worry about being responsible with the bloody thing. Maybe he'd learn something from watching memories of his parents; it wasn't like they hadn't been at war during his childhood or anything.
Harry touched his wand to his forehead and remembered the snippet of lullaby he remembered his mother singing. Once certain he had it, he placed the silvery memory into the bowl and swirled it in the memory potion required to make the pensieve work. After a moment, he steeled himself and leaned forward.
Harry had seen flashes of his nursery before, but this was the first time he could truly observe it and he drank in the pale blue room. Flashes of red and gold caught his attention and he figured his father and godfather must have added their own touches after his mum had finished the room. (He knew Lily had originally decorated the room from Wormtail, during one of the few moments that Harry was willing to talk to the rat about his dead family.)
Lily was just tucking a baby Harry into bed as the memory began. Baby Harry giggled and cooed happily at his mother, fat little hands reaching up and grasping at her hair. Lily smiled and pulled the lock away, saying, "No, no, little one. Here, have Paddy." She handed over a stuffed black dog, which baby Harry immediately grabbed and set to gnawing on the nose of.
Harry grinned at that and shuffled a little closer to the crib as Lily started singing softly under her breath about pegasi and griffins drawing carriages with sleeping children off to their dreams. Baby Harry drifted off to sleep, but the elder Harry stood and stared with tears in his eyes as his mother gently smoothed wild hair from an unmarked forehead, smiling with pain in her eyes.
"Sleep, Harry," Lily whispered. "Sleep and dream of peaceful things while you still can."
Harry found himself back in his sitting room, face wet with tears. The pensieve sat innocently on the table before him, potion and memory still swirling slowly.
"Mum..." Harry whispered and leaned back against his couch, staring up at the ceiling. He'd long known that his mother had loved him, but it was one thing to hear her sacrifice herself to save him, and another thing entirely to hear her wishing him pleasant dreams on a normal night; to watch her putting him to sleep with a smile on her face.
Harry wiped away his tears and sat forward again, looking down at the stone bowl. Maybe he could see his father next.
The first memory that wasn't Harry's came during a fight about who would be the secret keeper. James wanted Sirius, but Lily wanted it to be Dumbledore or another friend from the Order. Neither adult had noticed a wide-eyed Harry crawling around the doorway when the argument had become raised voices.
Harry had been standing next to himself and almost didn't realise that another memory was appearing over top of his own memory until there was the flash of spellfire. At that moment, he froze his own memory and focused on the shade of a memory that was running in the background.
The Potter family faded away and new players came into focus. Harry recognised a much younger Dumbledore, as well but not the two other males or the young woman. The woman was watching the fight with terror in her eyes, while Dumbledore and the blond man at his side faced off against the last young man who had the same colourings as Dumbledore. From Harry's brief research into Dumbledore's family, he thought that must be Aberforth, the Headmaster's younger brother.
Harry wasn't quite certain what they were arguing about, especially since spells had just started being thrown between the blond and Aberforth. Dumbledore seemed uncertain for a moment, but a cutting curse got past the blond's shield and he started casting against his brother, anger burning in his eyes.
The lights of spellfire darted across the room, mixing so it was difficult to see which spell belonged to who. And then the young woman let out a scream and ran forward into the spellfire.
Harry couldn't have hoped to track where the spell that killed her came from, and he doubted the duellers could, either. But they all froze as she crumpled to the ground.
And then the younger Dumbledore shouted, "Ariana!" and was running forward while the elder stood in horror and the blond blinked, surprised.
The memory faded away, leaving Harry alone with the frozen argument between James and Lily.
"Ariana..." Harry breathed, eyes wide. Ariana Dumbledore had been the younger sister of Albus and Aberforth. He'd seen her grave in Godric's Hallow, and Fawkes had cried over it. "Murdered during a fight between brothers and... Who was the blond?" Harry wondered, brows creasing with a frown.
He wanted the ghost memory to come back. Perhaps someone had spoken the blond's name. Harry wanted to know who it had been, needed to know.
"Fawkes," Harry remembered and pulled away from the pensieve to look around his room. The light was fading outside and he should probably be heading out to find food soon, but Harry was more intent on his mystery. "Fawkes!" he called, holding up an arm for the phoenix.
Fawkes appeared on his arm in a flicker of flame and gave Harry a curious bird-look.
Harry smiled at the bird a little tightly. "I just saw a ghost memory in the pensieve," he explained. "It was Ariana's death." Fawkes let out a sad trill and Harry's forced smile fell. "I know. But... do you know who the blond was?"
Fawkes considered him for a moment, then launched himself off Harry's arm and disappeared in flames again. Harry only had to wait a moment before the phoenix returned, clasping an ancient photo in his talons.
Harry took the photo and looked at the images of Dumbledore and the blond man from before smiling back at him. They were bumping shoulders in a friendly way. "Yes, him," Harry agreed even as he turned the photo over. There, on the back, was a note: Albus and Gellert, 1900.
"Gellert?" Harry murmured, frowning. The name sounded vaguely familiar, but he wasn't certain why, and Fawkes had left him to his musings.
A knock on the door interrupted his thoughts and Harry set the photo down on the table next to the pensieve before going to open the door. The Lestrange brothers and Antonin were standing there, smiling. "Food?" Rabastan suggested hopefully.
But Antonin took in Harry's troubled expression and asked, "Harry, what is it?"
Harry shook his head. "Do you know of any Gellerts that were alive at the turn of the century?"
"Gellert?" Rodolphus repeated, frowning. Next to him, Rabastan was rubbing at his chin.
Antonin blinked, once, then nodded. "Gellert Grindelwald," he announced.
Harry jerked in surprise, then looked back over at the table where the photo lay. "Grindelwald...?" he wondered. But why would Dumbledore have been so friendly with the man he eventually defeated?
"Why do you ask?" Antonin asked, considering the young wizard with worry in his eyes.
"No reason!" Harry announced and stepped out into the hall, bringing his door shut behind him. "I'm with Rabastan – food?"
Antonin was still frowning even as the four set out for where Peter was awaiting them with food.
Harry decided to leave the pensieve for the rest of the night and hid the photo of Gellert and Dumbledore under the basin before retiring to his room to read a book on runic theory that Voldemort had suggested to him when he'd mentioned some interest in learning about runes.
The next afternoon, after getting some studying in and enjoying a lunch with his Death Eater friends, Harry again returned to his pensieve to view old memories. However, his first dip wasn't into a childhood memory of his first Christmas as he'd expected, but another ghost memory; Harry found himself standing next to an ocean with Dumbledore and the blond man that matched a picture of Grindelwald that Harry had found before lunch.
"It ends here, Gellert," Dumbledore was saying. "You've terrorised enough people for the sake of your beliefs–"
"Our beliefs, Albus," Grindelwald insisted, smiling a twisted little smile. "Or have you forgotten the years we spent together in your home, searching for a way to save the world–"
"Yes, save it, Gellert!" Dumbledore snapped. "Not destroy it!"
"I'm only destroying the unworthy," Grindelwald replied mildly.
"Like my sister?" the one-time Headmaster wondered. "Was she unworthy?"
Grindelwald opened his mouth to respond, then snapped it closed and thought for a moment. When he finally responded, it was with sadness in his eyes. "Albus, Ariana was in the way of your greatness–"
"She was my sister!" Dumbledore roared.
"She was a waste of space!" Grindelwald snapped back, pulling his wand out as Dumbledore did the same. "She was good for nothing with magic she couldn't control! She even killed your mother, Albus! She's better off dead. For the greater good."
Fury lit Dumbledore's eyes and he shot out a curse towards his old friend.
The scene faded away as Grindelwald returned fire and Harry pulled away from the pensieve, sick to his stomach. The 'greater good'. That was something Dumbledore had cited once or twice, and Harry wondered how he could bear to say such things when Grindelwald had spouted them about Ariana. How had those two ever been friends?
But, then, how could Harry be living with the man who killed his parents? How could he be friends with the husband of the woman who tortured his best friend's parents into insanity and killed his own godfather? How could he bare to joke with the man who had betrayed his parents?
Harry didn't like the correlations he was drawing between himself and Dumbledore. Half-bloods, friends with the dark lords who would rule their lives, estranged from friends and family for their choices...
He felt a sudden sharp pain from his scar and Harry blinked himself out of his silent angst. Voldemort wasn't in the room or at the door, so far as he could tell, so he closed his eyes and sunk into his mind. There, the Dark Lord sat in his green chair, scowling.
"Would you stop being a teenager already?" Voldemort snapped once Harry had fully appeared in his chair.
"I'll get right on that," Harry replied drily. "Why are you pestering me?"
Voldemort sneered and tented his fingers in front of his face. "Your emotional turmoil is disturbing my work."
Harry's lips twitched with a smile at the Dark Lord's phrasing. "So sorry," he offered.
Voldemort sighed when Harry didn't offer anything beyond his slightly sarcastic apology. "I'm a Dark Lord, Potter, not a therapist," he snapped, earning a surprised laugh from the teen, then continued in a much gentler tone, "but if you require an ear to listen to your problems, I am never far."
Harry relaxed back in his chair, touched by the offer, despite the man who was giving it. "Thanks," he said and took on a thoughtful air. "What do you know about Dumbledore's young adult-hood? Before he became a teacher?"
Voldemort sighed and settled back in his chair for a long talk. "I assume you've seen some ghost memories?" Harry nodded. "I know very little. I was never particularly interested in his past, only that I might eventually get him out of my way. What have you learned?"
Harry tugged on his ear lobe. "I told you that Dumbledore had two siblings, right?"
Voldemort shrugged. "Aberforth and the girl. What was her name? Andrea? Alice?"
"Ariana," Harry replied. "I saw her death. Dumbledore and his brother and a friend of Dumbledore's were arguing and duelling and she got in the way. It killed her."
Voldemort blinked. "So?"
Harry sighed. "Aberforth was rumoured to never like his brother, and I think that's why. But, anyway, Dumbledore's friend who was there was Gellert Grindelwald."
The Dark Lord sat forward, expression intent. "Grindelwald? You're certain?"
Harry nodded. "Yeah. I looked up a picture of him, this morning, and it's him. No joke; Dumbledore and Grindelwald were friends in the early nineteen hundreds."
"Interesting..." Voldemort rubbed at his chin, still leaned forward. "They were friends, and I suppose the girl's death forced them apart?"
Harry nodded. "Yeah. When they met for their 'final battle', Grindelwald alluded to Ariana's death as having been for the 'greater good'."
Voldemort jerked back at that, eyes darkening. "The 'greater good'," he spat. "Sounds familiar. They were friends, and the old fool used the same line for his whole life, in spite of Grindelwald using it. How... precious."
Harry rolled his eyes at the Dark Lord. "That's one way to put it."
Voldemort snorted and leaned back against his chair. "And so, how does all this bother you? Don't tell me you feel sorry for the dead fool now!"
Harry sighed and shook his head, eyeing his hands as they twisted in his lap. "No, but I do... empathise with him... I guess."
"Why?" Voldemort demanded, disgusted. "Why would you empathise with him? Why would you even care? He was a manipulative bastard who did more bad than good."
Harry shrugged and glanced up at the irritated Dark Lord. "I'm very like him," he commented softly. "I made the choice to make peace with you and made friends with some of your Death Eaters and my friends ostracised me because of it–"
Voldemort let out an irritated sound and reached forward to force Harry to meet his eyes. "I don't think I could ever understand what brought Grindelwald and the fool together, but I can say this: You and I are nothing like Grindelwald and Dumbledore. For one, we did everything backwards from them. For another, you don't manipulate people." He sat back, leaving Harry to stare at him in surprise. "I may not be good with reading humans, Harry, but I'm good enough at reading you to know that you're nothing like Dumbledore. Perhaps you share some similarities, but can that not also be said of you and myself? Will you start fearing you're turning into me next?"
Harry shook his head. "No, but for all that we shared a similar childhood, our views of the world are completely opposite. But I see things like Dumbledore did–"
"Do you believe in the 'greater good'?" Voldemort demanded. "Do you believe that sacrificing one or two boys is okay if the greater number of people live better lives?"
"No!" Harry snapped, horrified at the very thought.
Voldemort snorted. "Perhaps you look upon muggleborns favourably, but you don't think like him, and I doubt you ever will."
The Dark Lord sighed and stood. "I have work to be doing. Stop moping and view a quidditch game or something – that will cheer you up." So saying, he vanished from Harry's mindscape.
Harry felt a smile creeping across his face at the Dark Lord's exit. "Thanks," he said to the still pendent on the wall, then returned to the real world to take the man's suggestion; watching Gryffindor decimate Slytherin would always raise his spirits.
Harry didn't know what possessed him to view the moment when Dumbledore told him the prophecy, but he did. Curiously, there was an odd dissonance to the words, as if they were trying to say something else. When Harry tried to focus on the dissonance, it went away and he huffed, irritated.
Three plays of the scene later and he still wasn't sure what he was hearing, but he'd finally been able to catch some words:
'..must fall...grandfather's fate...'
'...hands entwined...world rise...'
'The change approaches...'
When Harry tried watching the scene a fourth time, the dissonance was completely gone, so he pulled out of the pensieve and wrote down the words he'd heard. Then he sat back and thought about them. What did they mean? What did it mean that they'd come through during that particular memory? Was it another prophecy? And, if so, who was it about?
Someone knocked on the door and, after a quick glance at the clock to see that it was, in fact, time for dinner, Harry got up and walked over to the door, shoving the paper with the mystery words into his pocket.
"Ready to go?" Peter asked, grinning at him.
Harry nodded and stepped out into the hallway, closing his door behind him. "The others already head down?"
Peter sighed. "Bella was being..."
"Bella?" Harry suggested, used to the Lestrange brothers having to leave him to care for the mad woman.
"Rather," Peter agreed, shaking his head. "And Antonin was working on something with Jason Nott, so they went down together."
"At least you haven't abandoned me," Harry teased, green eyes sparkling.
The rat animagus rolled his eyes. "I'll abandon you as soon as we get into the dining room. I don't know why you insist on sitting with my lord."
"Someone has to sit with him," Harry pointed out. "And ever since Christmas, he's been too busy to meet with me in the afternoons."
Peter nodded, acknowledging the point. A resistance group acting out of France had been making strategic hits starting shortly after Christmas, and the whole Dark Order was being kept on their toes trying to catch the group. It wouldn't have been so much trouble if the idiots would stop attacking normal witches and wizards that weren't a part of Voldemort's group, only trying to get by under the Dark Lord's rule. But the French resistance had taken the stance that anyone not fighting against the oppression was for it, which meant everyone was fair game.
Voldemort didn't ignore any attacks during the Sunday dinners, but he also refused to call them off or even miss them himself, so he'd asked Harry if the teen minded moving their afternoon meetings to over dinner. Harry had no problem eating with the Dark Lord, unlike most of his followers, and if they needed to discuss anything private, they could speak in Parseltongue, which had the added bonus of freaking out the Death Eaters. (Harry had learned early on during his stay that the Death Eaters were all conditioned to flinch and start behaving when the serpent's tongue was spoken near them, something that he used with great glee when a Death Eater started getting overly rude or pulled out their wand to curse him.)
True to his words, Peter scampered away from Harry as soon as they entered the formal dining room, leaving the teen to walk up to the empty seat on Voldemort's right on his own. (Harry had noticed, during past meals when he didn't sit with the Dark Lord, that the right seat was empty. It didn't escape his notice that Voldemort was making a point to his Death Eaters that Harry was better than them and they needed to respect him.)
Voldemort nodded to him once Harry took his seat and Harry nodded back. Since Peter and Harry seemed to have been among the last coming in, the Dark Lord turned to a watching house elf and gave the signal for the food to be served, which it was. Everyone tucked in with gusto and people turned to their neighbours to talk quietly.
Voldemort was carefully cutting into his rare steak when he asked, "What's troubling you?"
Harry grimaced – Peter may have been oblivious to his trouble, but the Dark Lord never was. :Something in my pensieve,: he offered in Parseltongue.
The Dark Lord frowned faintly. :Another comparison between yourself and the old fool?:
:Not so much, but I believe it's another ghost memory,: Harry explained. :I was watching the prophecy and there were some other words that were coming through, but it wasn't a complete memory.:
:A ghost memory that's not complete? Something Dumbledore tried very hard to erase?:
Harry shrugged and reached into his pocket for the slip of paper he'd written the words on. :Something like that, sure. Anyway, I wrote down what I could catch before it completely vanished. Here.:
Voldemort set his utensils down to focus entirely on the paper Harry handed over. He pondered them for a long moment while Harry munched on broccoli and called over a house elf to request some milk. It wasn't that he didn't want the water next to his plate, but the house elves had added a spice to the broccoli which was a little too spicy for him to eat alone, and he'd found in the past that it was easier to request a glass of milk than ask for unseasoned broccoli or just leave it uneaten.
Finally, Voldemort set the paper down on the table and picked his fork back up. :It has the ring of a prophecy.:
:I thought as much,: Harry agreed. :But that was all I could get. I tried watching the memory again, but the ghost was gone.:
Voldemort let out an irritated hiss. :Blast it. I can try watching it to see if I can get more, I suppose.:
:Or?: Harry enquired, hearing the hesitation in the other wizard's voice.
The Dark Lord frowned. :Try asking that bird of yours. He lived with Dumbledore for long enough.:
Harry nodded. :I'll do it after dinner. Did you want to come with?:
Voldemort blinked, surprised, and glanced around the table at his people, a few of whom were leaning just slightly away from the two Parselmouths. :Why?: he wondered.
Harry shrugged. :A hunch. If it's a prophecy, there's a chance it's about one of us or him, especially if he watched it so much that it created a ghost. More so if he tried so hard to erase it.: Harry shot the Dark Lord a knowing look. :And you can't pretend you're not curious.:
Voldemort smirked. :Then I'll join you after dinner,: he decided, then switched to English. "Now, what have you been working on, other than your pensieve?"
Harry sighed and started up a conversation about some runes work that was confusing him. As the two continued speaking in English, the Death Eaters all relaxed and the meal returned to being quietly cheerful.
"Fawkes?" Harry called once he and Voldemort had entered Harry's suite.
The phoenix appeared in a lick of flame and came to rest on the arm Harry held out for him. He glanced curiously at the frowning Dark Lord, then looked at Harry, giving the teen his full attention.
"I got a weird ghost memory in my pensieve, one that seemed like it might have been erased. We're hoping you could help us figure out what it was supposed to be?"
Fawkes chirped an agreement and flew over to his perch, which he brought over to the table the pensieve sat on.
The two humans took the hint and moved over to take seats around the table. Before Harry could pull out the paper he'd written what he'd heard on, Voldemort leaned forward and picked up the photo of Dumbledore and Grindelwald. "You kept this?" he asked the teen.
Harry shrugged. "What else would I do with it? I could throw it out, I suppose, but it seems wrong to just toss it in the fire.
Voldemort sneered and dropped the photo back onto the table. "Gryffindors."
"Slytherins," Harry shot back with a grin as he pulled out the paper. He turned to Fawkes and said, "It sounds a bit like a prophecy, see. Uhm... Something about a grandfather's fate and..." Harry trailed off as Fawkes flashed away. "That was odd."
"He was Dumbledore's bird," Voldemort helpfully pointed out.
"Well, yeah, but–"
Fawkes' return cut off whatever Harry had been about to say and the two wizards turned their attention of the phoenix, who looked quite pleased with himself as he deposited a bottle holding a shimmering memory in it on the table next to the pensieve.
"That's the memory of the prophecy?" Voldemort asked, leaning forward eagerly.
Fawkes chirped an agreement, then set about preening himself.
Harry swallowed, then quickly emptied the bottle into the stone bowl. After a quick glance at Voldemort, who nodded, Harry touched the memory with his wand, as Dumbledore had once done with another prophecy.
As with the other prophecy, Sibyll Trelawney's form rose up over the pensieve and recited a prophecy in a distant voice, "The change approaches. Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies. The other will mark him as his equal, and he shall show the other things he knows not. When the child meets the grandfather, he shall know only trust. By his seventh year, shall things be made clear. Once-enemies unite, by hands entwined shall the world rise. Yet, to rise, something first must fall; the grandfather's fate is clear. As the seventh month dies, the change comes near."
"But, that's..." Harry stared at the pensieve, which had returned to its slow swirl.
"Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies," Voldemort repeated. "And the bit about being marked as an equal–"
"That's the same," Harry said, turning to Fawkes, who was watching them with his head tilted to one side. "Isn't it?"
Fawkes dipped his head in a nod.
"It's the same prophecy?" Harry asked.
Fawkes tilted his head in a sort of, 'Yes, but no,' response.
"Which one is the real one?" Voldemort demanded, reaching for the empty bottle on the table that had held the prophecy. "This one?"
Fawkes nodded and ruffled his wings a bit.
"The other one was a fake?" Harry whispered.
Voldemort tossed the bottle to one side negligently, then leaned back into his chair and chuckled. "Oh, well played, you old fool. Well played."
Harry stared down at the innocent slip of memory which was just the slightest bit paler than his own memories. "No one needs to die," Harry realised and looked over at where the Dark Lord was watching him, a bitter smile touching his lipless mouth. "Neither of us has to die!"
"Instead, we get to 'unite'," Voldemort agreed drily.
"Haven't we already?" Harry replied. "We've got a common goal, and maybe not all your people are one hundred percent on-board with it, but you and I are. Right?"
They didn't really agree on how to solve the muggle problem, Voldemort admitted to himself, but they agreed that there was one and that the problem was to do with the muggles and not the muggleborns. "Right, so say we're already 'united', what about the 'hands entwined' bit? Because...no. Just, no."
Fawkes twittered in amusement while Harry flushed and shook his head. "Don't make me kick you out," he threatened the phoenix, which just made Fawkes twitter louder. "Oh, piss off!"
Fawkes gave the teen a highly amused look, then disappeared.
"You shouldn't speak to your familiar like that," Voldemort mock chastised him.
"He was Dumbledore's familiar first," Harry muttered, kicking at the skirt of the sofa he sat on. "And...I don't know. Do we have to take it literally?"
Voldemort sighed. It was one thing to hear a prophecy tell you you'd either kill someone or be killed by them; it was another thing entirely to be told you'd have a romantic relationship with someone you'd spent a great deal of time hating. "I'm a little amused that it's calling Dumbledore your grandfather, you know," the Dark Lord offered.
"Hell. No," Harry replied, accepting the unspoken offer to ignore all thoughts of 'entwining their hands' or whatever. "Trelawney was on some sort of wacked out potions when she said that bit."
" 'Wacked out potions'?" Voldemort repeated, staring at the teen.
Harry shrugged. "Something Rabastan said to me."
"Salazar save me."
Harry grinned, unrepentant. "I'll have to tell him you called upon your ancestor to save you from his sense of humour."
Voldemort shook his head and stood. "I've got work to do."
Harry laughed as the Dark Lord made his strategic retreat. However, before he could open the door, the teen asked, "Hey, Voldemort?"
The older wizard looked back over his shoulder. "Yes?"
"What now?" Harry asked, waving a hand towards the pensieve and the memory inside.
Voldemort sighed. "Now, you pass your NEWTs and officially graduate from Hogwarts. I refuse to have an equal who dropped out." He gave the teen a warning look.
Harry smiled back. "Okay. I think I can manage that much."
"Good." Voldemort swept from the room, sneering at the Death Eaters who darted out of his way out in the hall.
Back in his room, Harry sighed and stood. "Well, if I'm going to pass those damn tests, I suppose I might as well study some. I'll worry about you later," he told the pensieve, then picked it up and put it away in a cabinet in the corner. Out of sight, out of mind, as Aunt Petunia had always said.
A/N: I think I may have broken the boys. XD
There's one more ghost memory in the pensieve, and I wanted to get it into this chapter, but it was being difficult, so I'll save it for later. I might have added it at the end, but since Harry's not going to pull the pensieve out again until after his NEWTs... *shrug*
So, only a few more chapters, I'm thinking. One, maybe two, and then an epilogue. And then this fic will be FINISHED! (And you lot can start pestering me about other fics. LOL.)