Author's note: I don't know how many fans of this story have put me on author alert, so to make sure the rest of you are warned of the new chapter, here's already a bit of the first chapter to the sequel
If you want to read the rest of the first chapter, the sequel is now posted under the name "Survival of the fittest"
I hope to see you all there!
Chapter 1: Holiday
16th of July
The sun was burning on their skin and the small gust of wind did nothing to cool them off. Only the slippers they wore, prevented their feet from getting burned on the hot sand.
"What do you think of this spot?" Sirius asked and shifted the basket with refreshments and food from one arm to the other. His eyes were already trained on the sea, his face displaying his eagerness to take a good dive in the refreshing water. His blue T-shirt was already sticking to his back and he couldn't wait to get rid of the sweaty shirt.
"What does it matter? This entire beach side belongs to you now." A dark voice replied snidely.
"Aw, is little Snivellus jealous?" Sirius taunted smirking.
"Padfoot, behave. They are our guests." Remus ordered with a stern gaze. "Now put that basket down, place the sunscreen and lay down the towels on the sand."
"Looks like the dog is collared." Snape smirked when Sirius did what he was told to.
Sirius rose up with narrowed eyes and opened his mouth to deliver a sharp retort, but was interrupted by Lucius.
"Severus, we are here as their guests." He reminded his scowling lover. "Do try to keep your comments to a minimum."
"Yes, this is a holiday after all." Narcissa chimed in, adjusting her hat to protect her eyes against the sun.
Even though she and Lucius were no longer together, she didn't seem to mind living together with her ex and his lover. As a matter of fact, she seemed to take delight in teasing them whenever the opportunity arose.
"What do you think, cub? Is this place good?" Remus asked smiling.
The dark haired boy, who had been staring at the sea with a contemplative face, startled and shrugged. "Yeah, sure, this is good." Harry replied, his green eyes shifting to look at the sea again.
Remus and Sirius shared a concerned look.
Ever since the school year ended, Harry had a closed off look on his face. It wasn't hard to find the cause of his stress: Dumbledore and the Weasley clan.
Getting rid of the biggest thread to wizard kind had gained Harry an, if possible, bigger enemy. Even knowing he couldn't trust Dumbledore hadn't prepared the young man for the shock of almost getting killed by the same man his parents had trusted.
Aurors over the whole world were informed to search for the ex Headmaster, but so far they had nothing. Wherever Dumbledore was hiding now, it was somewhere inconspicuous.
At first, the Minister had appointed four Aurors to stay by Harry's side twenty four seven, but Harry had quickly made clear the Minister wouldn't like the outcome of what would happen if the Aurors stayed. They had compromised: the Aurors would only be called in when Harry visited busy places to avoid him getting kidnapped and the rest of the time his family, friends and pets had to watch over him. It made Harry feel as if he was a small child, incapable of defending himself, but he had no other option.
For the time being, Harry tried to ignore the threat of Dumbledore and enjoy his Voldemort free life – which proved to be far more difficult than expected.
Molly and Ron Weasley had never forgiven him for Percy's death. Deaf to the truth of Percy aiding the Death Eaters, they made it their job to slander Harry's name in the press, together with the rest of his family and the Malfoys. Weeks ago, they had tried to put Harry on trial for murder (ignoring the fact that it had been Sirius who had killed Percy to defend his godson) but the Minister had quickly intervened, providing evidence that Percy had helped Voldemort and that his murder had happened out of defence.
Molly and Ron hadn't taken the news lightly and had turned more vicious in their attacks to indiscriminate Harry in the press.
They had tried to get him in Azkaban for using Dark magic, but because almost everybody had to use Dark magic to survive the war, their protest was filed and afterwards disappeared in the large basement of the building.
If Ron's behaviour during the school year hadn't been enough of a clue to let Harry's know their friendship was dead, these attacks finally convinced him. It was depressing and heart breaking to realize that their friendship of five years wasn't enough for the ginger haired boy to stay by his side.
Thankfully not all Weasleys had joined the attack. Arthur had divorced his wife after her first public attack and the twins and the two eldest sons had sent a letter and paid a visit to Harry, giving their support.
Ginny had sent a letter too, but unfortunately for her, Draco had intercepted the letter and had destroyed before Harry had had the chance to read it. This action had annoyed Harry greatly but Draco had managed to distract him quite effectively.
Hermione had apologized after the funerals and had quickly scurried away before Harry was able to utter a word. That had probably been a good idea, because he still had no clue as to what to do with her. He wondered if there would ever come a time where he would be able to talk to her, without remembering how she had abandoned him.
After the first two weeks of owls bombarding Grimmauld Place asking for more interviews with Harry and people on the street eyeing him warily, some even fearfully, Sirius had shipped his family, the Malfoys and a very reluctant Snape off to the vacation home James had left him to make sure they would have a calm summer without any interruptions.
Well, as calm as it could get with Sirius and Snape in constant near vicinity.
"Why again did you drag me to this god forsaken hellhole?" Snape glared when Lucius beckoned him to sit down on the blanket beneath the sunscreen.
"Because you need to relax once in a while. Oh and I so do enjoy seeing you suffer by sharing a house with Gryffindors." Lucius deadpanned.
Snape's glare intensified tenfold when Narcissa chuckled softly and if Lucius hadn't been used to receive that glare on a daily basis, he would have cowered in fear. As it was, he merely handed a cold Butterbeer to his lover and Narcissa before leaning back in his beach chair.
"What do you think of swimming?" Draco suggested to Harry and folded is T-shirt, leaving him in dark green swimming trunks.
A blond eyebrow rose up when he received no reply from his boyfriend and he looked questionably at Sirius and Remus, who shrugged helplessly.
Draco huffed and quickly grabbed his wand and spelled Harry's blue T-shirt away.
"What the …?!" Harry exclaimed when he was suddenly lifted and put over a shoulder. "Let me down, you git!" He protested and smacked Draco's back, reddening the skin in the progress.
"Not before we're in the water." Draco told him calmly and proceeded to the water with a heavily protesting Harry over his shoulder. His yelling was abruptly cut off when Draco threw him in the cool water, making him splutter instead.
Ruby and Garin briefly looked up when they heard the splash, but laid back down on the sand that was especially cooled for them. Sapphire blinked sleepily, before curling up in a furry ball and falling asleep again.
Sirius cocked his head to the right and watched amused how his godson had taken to dunk the young Malfoy, making the blond splutter this time.
"If I had known that only a good dunking was needed to break through Harry's shell, I would have done it weeks ago." He commented dryly.
Remus snorted. "You can't blame him for feeling down after everything that happened to him." He replied, frowning.
"Is he still pining for that idiotic redhead and that know-it-all?" Snape sneered, his disgust for those particular Gryffindors clear on his face.
"I suspect he's just mourning the definite ending of their friendship." Remus muttered and pushed back a piece of his grey brown hair behind his ear. "You can't blame him for doing that."
"I thought he had given up on them during the school year?" Lucius questioned.
"He probably was subconsciously wishing for those two to come around and accept him as a Slytherin and as friend of Draco." Remus sighed.
Sirius snorted and took a swig of his Butterbeer. "That would only happen when it snows in hell."
"About that." Narcissa suddenly spoke up. "Was the ritual successful?"
Snape shook his head. "No, if anything, it seems the ritual only made matters worse. The animosity between the Houses escalated when Potter was dropped in Slytherin. I doubt things will change for the better when the school year starts again."
"Do you think the students will try to attack Harry?" She asked worried.
Only two minutes after Draco had officially introduced Harry to his mother, she had hugged the young man and had enclosed him in her heart. It didn't take long for her to consider Harry as her own son. That had made Draco glowing with pride of course. He was very happy to have his boyfriend interacting with his mother as if she was his own. Narcissa was just happy that her son had found someone he was happy with and that she had someone else to dote on.
"If Weasley succeeds in her attacks, then you can count on the students trying to attack Potter. It isn't as if they are smart enough to think on their own." Snape answered curtly.
"Not all students are idiots, Severus." Remus frowned.
Surprisingly enough, it was Sirius who came to Snape's defence. "Sadly enough I have to agree with Snivellus." He muttered grimacing. "They already tried to attack Harry last year and the Weasleys hadn't started their attacks then. Harry will have anything but a calm year."
"What about Dumbledore?" Narcissa asked, wrinkling her nose delicately. "Will Harry be safe in Hogwarts?"
"Minerva and Flitwick created a new mass of spells that enclose both the school and the surrounding areas up to fifty miles." Remus explained. "If Dumbledore is in range of the net, Minerva will be notified immediately."
"Will that be enough?" She asked sceptically. "I'm loathe to admit it but that man isn't weak. The Dark Lord had a reason to fear him and he wasn't weak either. Who is to say he won't be able to destroy the net?"
"I doubt he'll be able to destroy it completely." Snape replied. "That cat received help from Slytherin and the castle. They used ancient magic. Even if the old man manages to create a gap in the shield, we would know it immediately."
When Narcissa still looked unconvinced, Lucius said, "I spoke with the Headmistress at the end of June and she and I agreed that the dorms won't be a safe place for Harry. We do not know how many people will be influenced by that Weasley woman, so young Harry will get a room of his own, close to Severus' quarters. Only the ones he trusts will be able to find the room."
"Well, that does sound like a good solution." She admitted. "Does Harry know of his new living arrangements?"
"No, I haven't had the opportunity to talk to him yet." Lucius replied and casted a Cooling charm around them when the air grew too hot.
Sirius stopped caressing Ruby's back which cause the full grown lion to look up and growl in protest. He grimaced and resumed the stroking. "I take it Blondie hasn't been informed yet either then?" He asked lightly.
Lucius raised an eyebrow. "If you're talking about my son, then no, he doesn't know it yet."
"Oh, Blondie is going to be pissed off." Sirius grinned widely, already imagining Draco in a fit of rage. It would serve him right; that obnoxious possessive brat.
"Dog, did you know Draco has unpacked his suitcases in Potter's bedroom this morning?" Snape smirked. "I believe he's planning to stay with Potter during the night." He continued, enjoying the rapidly increasing red face of Sirius.
AN2: See you all in the sequel!