Author's Note: Thanks to everyone who reviewed, even if you reviewed when I only posted the chapter preview. Also, I apologize, as there were quite a few errors (grammar and spelling) in the last chapter. As I've mentioned, I work and go to school full time, so I barely have time for any recreational writing, let alone proof-reading my fanfics. Shoddy excuse I know, but that's life :D. If there is anyone out there who is willing to beta FWP, I'd appreciate it. If not, then I'll try to fix errors when I see them or when they're pointed out to me.
For those of you who are upset or curious that Dumbledore knows about Harry's transformation here's what I was thinking. Dumbledore, for all his faults, is a brilliant wizard. He is intelligent, and there's not much that would escape his notice. At this point, he doesn't know for sure that Harry is transformed, he just has a very good guess. And as we all know, Dumble's guesses turn out to be right.
Though, on the subject of Dumbledore, I still find myself confused by the whole Elder Wand thing. He planned to have the power of the wand die with him, but he also planned for Harry to find out about the Hallows and for the wand to end up in Voldemort's possession so that Harry would have like triple protection against him by somehow becoming the master of the EW himself.
Unless Dumbledore didn't plan for Voldemort to have the wand, which means his plan went: Harry goes to Voldemort and sacrifices himself The Horcrux takes the actual hit, Harry comes back because Voldemort used his blood to bring himself back Harry fights a now mortal Voldemort... Mortal Voldemort turns Harry into a pile of goo because Harry's spell knowledge consists of Summoning charm, Patronus charm, Shield charm, and Disarming charm...bwah? (I know, it's just another one of those amazing plot holes, I'm just trying to work it out in my head)
And with that, on with the story!
Note: This chapter is unbeta'd, so if there's any mistakes please let me know. On that note, I am still looking for a beta if anyone is interested!
Harry awoke to the rumbling sensation in his chest, as he felt a hand gently running through his fur. He cracked one eye open to see Hermione sitting up against the head of her bed, petting him as she thought. Harry closed his eyes again and decided to enjoy the sensation.
He had stayed up for most of the night watching Hermione toss and turn. It wasn't until Crookshanks meowed at him and gave a pointed look at his master that Harry tried helping. He had hopped onto her bed and gently nudged himself under one of her arms. After a few moments, Hermione seemed to relax, and the combination of her rhythmic breathing and his own fatigue finally lulled him off to sleep. Now the magic that Hermione was working on his fur was tempting him to have a bit of a lie in.
The relative peace of the morning was disturbed with the arrival of a special messenger. Harry felt more then saw the flash of fire, and immediately sprang to his feet. His eyes widened in recognition as he took in the brilliant scarlet form of Fawkes, the phoenix that had come to his aid when he fought in the Chamber of Secrets, and familiar to Albus Dumbledore.
Hermione froze at the flashy entrance, staring in apprehension at the strange bird that had exploded into her room. Fawkes, sensing her distress, sang a soothing note, and Hermione found herself relaxing. Fawkes landed at the end of her bed, and extended his leg, showing the message that was attached.
Hermione slowly reached forward, still slightly apprehensive of the magnificent bird. She'd read about phoenixes of course, and knew that they were creatures normally associated with the light. She then realized there was only one person she knew with a phoenix who would try contacting her, the Headmaster.
'Maybe he found Harry!' She thought as she took the parchment from Fawkes. As she sat back to read it, Fawkes hopped onto her bed, standing in front of Harry. He craned his neck this way and that, looking over the strange creature, before staring Harry in the eyes.
Then he laughed. Sure, it didn't sound like a laugh, but the phoenix song that came from Fawkes was laced with humor. What was it with every animal he knew finding his situation so amusing? He swore he would never forgive Fawkes, though he was still better than Crookshanks in his opinion. At least the bird didn't try to get Harry to peep at his best friend.
"Oh my! Professor Dumbledore is coming over to speak with me!" Hermione exclaimed after reading the letter. She tossed the parchment onto her nightstand and pulling off her top and running to her wardrobe, not wanting to meet her headmaster in her night clothes.
The laughter from Fawkes echoed in Harry's mind as he quickly hid under a pillow.
A short while later Hermione was dressed and waiting in her living room anxiously for the arrival of Dumbledore. Harry and Crookshanks watched as her leg bounced up and down as she tried to concentrate on the book she was reading. Fawkes had flashed away after Hermione wrote a reply saying she was fine with meeting the headmaster. Now they just sat in silence, aside from the tapping of Hermione's foot.
Finally there was a knock on the door, and Hermione was out of her seat as though she'd been fired from a cannon. Harry and Crookshanks quickly dove out of the way to avoid being stepped on by the girl, as she ran to the door and threw it open.
There was Professor Dumbledore, smiling down at Hermione and dressed in what seemed to be a purple suede overcoat, with some kind of shirt with a purple flower pattern and a large green bow-tie. To complete the look he was wearing a brown top hat and had a cane in his hands. Hermione's greeting died on her lips as she took in her headmaster's appearance.
"Ah, good morning Ms. Granger. I thank you for making time to speak with me today, I hope it is not an inconvenience?"
Hermione shook her head trying to clear it, but Dumbledore was still dressed in the outlandish getup. "Um... not at all Headmaster. Please come in." She said, finally getting over the shock his appearance had caused.
Hermione led Dumbledore into the living room, and was able to wait a whole second after he sat down before she barraged him with questions.
"Did you find Harry Professor? Is he okay? Did his relatives throw him out? Is he with Sirius? He didn't use magic again did he? He isn't in any trouble is he? Why are you dressed like that?"
Dumbledore merely smiled as Hermione went on, waiting for her to pause. When she finally stopped to take a breath, Dumbledore coughed, gaining her attention and a sheepish look.
"To answer you questions Ms. Granger, Mr. Potter is fine." Harry's head shot up at that. "I was able to figure out his location last night, and can guarantee you he is with people who will take very good care of him."
Hermione collapsed into the couch at Dumbledore's words. She had been so worried about her friend, who always seemed to find himself in one spot of trouble or another. She was so relieved, she almost missed that Dumbledore was still speaking.
"so he gave me a this outfit and some of his delightful candy as a gift before I left his factory. It's one of my favorite muggle outfits." He said, thoroughly confusing Hermione.
"Actually Ms. Granger, aside from delivering the happy news of Mr. Potter, I was visiting because Professor McGonagall told me she saw a most peculiar creature here last night when she was visiting, and I was interested in seeing it. If I may?"
Hermione nodded. Perhaps the headmaster knew what the strange creature she had psuedo adopted was? "Of course Professor. I've actually been trying to figure out what it was myself, but there's nothing even close to resembling it in any of my books!"
Harry made his appearance, walking from behind the chair he had dove behind to avoid Hermione's charge. He looked up at the blue eyes of Dumbledore, and felt something... tugging? It felt like something was pressing against his mind.
Professor Dumbledore's eyes began twinkling as he looked at the strange creature. "Most extraordinary. May I have a moment alone with him Ms. Granger? I'd like to try something to ascertain the identity of this little fellow."
Hermione nodded immediately. "Of course Professor. I'll just run into the kitchen for a bit. Would you like something to drink?"
"No thank you Ms. Granger," Dumbledore said. Hermione nodded, before excusing herself and walking to the kitchen. Once she was gone Dumbledore returned his gaze to Harry and smiled. "Well Mr. Potter, I must say you gave us all quite a scare yesterday."
Harry felt himself almost collapse in relief. Finally! Someone knew who he was! And best of all, it was Professor Dumbledore. If anyone could get him back to normal, it would be him.
"Quite extraordinary Mr. Potter. I've never heard of anyone turning into a magical creature for their animagus transformation." Harry's head snapped back in shock, and his form started to blur. "Please Mr. Potter, don't be nervous. You haven't done anything wrong, and to be honest I have the feeling that if you feel threatened by me, I might forget that I saw you here."
Harry stilled, trying to calm himself. He wasn't sure what the headmaster meant, but he definitely didn't want the old man to forget he had seen him here.
"If you don't mind Harry, I'd like to use a technique called Legilimency on you. It will allow me to review your memories and see what might have caused this unique transformation."
Harry nodded, glad to do anything to help solve the mess he was in.
"Excellent. Please just think of everything that's happened since right before you attempted your transformation." After giving Harry a moment, Dumbledore pulled his wand out and pointed it at the small creature. "Legilimens!" He said.
Everything was silent for a moment as Harry felt that pressure in his mind again, only this time it was focused, almost like a pin prick, compared to the heavy feeling he'd had before. He could see the memories of what had happened to him over the last couple days. From his transformation and his escape from the Dursley's, to his lunch and subsequent escape from that strange girl. Strangely enough, it seemed that the memories of what he had experienced since coming to Hermione's house were fragmented, the scenes of when he'd stumbled into her bathroom or from earlier this morning weren't there, or perhaps Dumbledore was just respecting what he considered to be private?
Finally, Dumbledore lowered his wand, and shook his head in amusement. "It seems I owe old Sebastian Lovegood a bag of lemon drops. To think that there really are Crumple-Horned Snorkacks."
Harry quirked his head at that. So the blonde girl was right? He was a Crumple-Horned Snorkack.
Dumbledore focused on Harry once again, thinking over the memories he had just witnessed. While Harry might have missed it during the transformation, Dumbledore had definitely felt the foreign magic within him that had interfered with the process. This had confirmed one of Dumbledore's greatest fears, even beyond the fact that Harry was a parselmouth. But... could this be the power?
He shook his head, deciding to think on it later. "Well Mr. Potter, you certainly have been busy. Let's start with the bad news first. I won't be able to transform you back." Harry felt his heart sink at that. Dumbledore noticed Harry's ears fall back, a look of sadness and concern, so he continued on, "There is a spell that will reverse the animagus transformation, however with your unique situation I cannot guarantee it would work without any side-effects. At best, I would assume that it would keep you from ever transforming again, but at worst it could leave you without access to your magical core."
Harry shook his head. He wouldn't really mind if he couldn't ever transform again, but not being able to do magic? He'd have to leave Hogwarts, and all his friends. That was too big a risk to take.
"However, I am confident that you will be able to manage the change on your own. It seems that the change into a creature with a magical core has created quite a bit of chaos with how your magic is used. It already seems more stable then it did when you first transformed. I'd say within two or three days, you'll have access to your own magical core again, and will then be able to transform back."
Harry nodded his head, feeling slightly relieved. After all, Dumbledore was an exceptional wizard. If he thought Harry could turn back on his own, then chances were he would.
Dumbledore smiled, seeing the agitation leave the small Snorkack. "Now Harry, it seems this form of yours has some special talents. The most obvious one I'm sure you've noticed, is your ability to apparate, or magically travel from one place to another."
"The other ability you have, seems to be a kind of self-defense mechanism. If you feel worried or threatened, you seems to be able to change the way others perceive you. You had Professor McGonagall quite convinced that you were an ordinary house cat last night."
'So that's why McGonagall didn't say anything!' Harry thought, wanting to rub his head in irritation. But then another thought had occurred to him. If he had that ability, why had the Dursleys attacked him?
Dumbledore picked up the question from Harry's mind. "I believe the reason you didn't just appear as something natural to the Dursleys, is that your magical core hadn't stabilized enough to use this defense."
Dumbledore walked towards him and knelt down, patting Harry on his head. "I do not know what other abilities your form might possess. I may have to restart my subscription to the Quibbler though..." Dumbledore paused, looking thoughtful, while Harry just looked up in confusion.
The silence was broken by a strange sound coming from the pocket of Dumbledore's coat. He reached inside and pulled out a pocket watch that was playing some nonsensical song.
Oompa Loompa Gobbledygate
If you don't leave now you will be late
Oompa Loompa dobbledeedee
For your appointment with Mad-Eye Moody
Dumbledore looked surprised, but nodded, and the pocket watch silenced as he put it back in his coat. "Dear me, I seem to have lost track of the time. Well Harry my boy, I must be off. If I keep Alastor waiting it will take me half an hour to convince him I wasn't replaced by some dark wizard looking to steal his fake leg. I shall see you when the term starts." Dumbledore turned and walked towards the kitchen. Inside he saw Hermione sitting at the table, a book of magical creatures opened before her.
"Thank you for your time Ms. Granger, I regret that I must be off. I have an important meeting with an associate of mine."
Hermione smiled. "Of course Headmaster. Were you able to discover what kind of creature he is?" She asked, looking at Harry who had followed the Headmaster in to the kitchen.
"Oh yes, he is a Crumple-Horned Snorkack. You probably will not find information about them in any book but there is a small publication called the Quibbler which frequently prints information about them. To be honest, I didn't even think they really existed until I saw him."
Making a mental note of the name Quibbler, Hermione decided to see if she could find a copy the next time she was in Diagon Alley.
"Thank you headmaster." She said. Then a concerned look crossed her face. "And.. you're certain Harry is okay? Can you tell me where he's staying right now?"
"Of course Ms. Granger, I was just going to let you know that this particular Snorkack..." Dumbledore started, before his pocket watch jumped out of his coat pocket. It floated in front of him, dancing in the air as it once again began to sing, catching both his and Hermione's attention.
Oompa Loompa gobbledydoid
Alsastor Moody is getting quite paranoid
Oompa Loompa dobblededenses
He has started to raise some defenses
"Oh dear me. I'm sorry Ms. Granger, I must go. The last time Alastor thought I was late he assumed it was because I had been captured, and when I arrived he claimed I had been replaced, and warded himself in his own vault at Gringotts. It took me two weeks to finally convince him that I was myself. I shall see you at the start of the term." With a smile and a wave, Dumbledore quickly spun in place, and with a crack he was gone.
Hermione stared at the spot her Headmaster had disappeared from, before sighing as she rubbed her temples. "That song is going to be stuck in my head all day now."
Harry nodded in agreement, and then mewed as he realized that Dumbledore still hadn't told Hermione that he was himself!
Crookshanks just purred in contentment, as he continued to sun himself on a window.
The next day was rather hectic. Hermione had received an owl from Ron after Dumbledore's visit saying that since Harry was alright, they were still going to head to the World Cup, and would pick her up today. Hermione had spent the rest of the day packing and trying to choose which books to take. Harry watched in amusement as Hermione flew around her room, grabbing things and setting them into piles that consisted of; Taking, Might Take, Will Consider Taking, and Requires Further Consideration. Books fell into each pile, and Harry began to wonder just how she was planning on fitting it all into her trunk. He didn't blame her though, as this would be her last chance to grab anything before the next summer, as she would be staying with the Weasleys until September 1st.
Hermione woke up early that morning and had breakfast with her parents. It was calm, nothing like the meals at the Weasley's house. When they were finished Hermione's father gave her a hug and wished her well for the next school year, and when he thought her mother wasn't looking, handed Hermione a fifty pound note. It made Harry laugh, when a minute later Hermione's mother did the same thing, only she gave her daughter a conspiratorial wink.
After her parents left, Hermione had just had enough time to grab her trunk and bring it down the stairs before the fireplace in her living room flared with green flames, before the twins Fred and George stepped out, followed a few seconds by Ron and their father.
Ron walked through the Granger's sitting room (carelessly tracking ash along the way, which would've set Hermione off, if she hadn't noticed Mr. Weasley vanishing the mess.) looking around.
"Huh, so this is a muggle home? Blimey, I can see why you'd want to get out of her Hermione, look at this! The pictures are broken, none of them are even moving!" Ron said, waving to the pictures of her and her family that adorned the wall.
Hermione huffed in indignation. "I'm not in a hurry to leave Ron, personally I'd be just as happy to stay here until the term starts. I can read her quite a bit easier then I can at the Burrow, and it's not like I care all that much about quidditch.. And I keep telling you muggle pictures don't move."
Ron however had focused solely on the first part. "What do you mean you don't care about quidditch! You go to every game Gryffindor plays!"
"Of course I do Ron, to support Harry. Honestly, if Harry wasn't on the team I probably wouldn't have ever watched a game." Hermione said.
Ron stood staring, unable to comprehend that someone in the world did not love quidditch. While his brain was wrestling with that concept, Mr. Weasley and the twins (who had waited for their father to vanish the ash off their clothing and shoes) approached.
"Good morning Hermione, you all ready to head to the Burrow?" Mr. Weasley asked.
Hermione nodded. "Yes Mr. Weasley. I take it we'll be traveling by floo?" She asked.
Mr. Weasley nodded, and began to say something when one of the twins yelped in surprise.
"Bloody hell Hermione!"
"What is this thing?" They asked, pointing to Harry, who was sitting on the trunk watching the proceedings.
"Oh! That's a Crumple-Horned Snorkack. I found him the other day, and it seems like he's kind of adopted me." She said, running a hand over Harry's head. He pressed up against the contact, arching his back as she ran her hand down it.
"Oh come off it, a Cramp-Horned Snorlax? Now you're sounding like Loony." Ron said, finally having something to take his mind off the impossibility of someone not loving quidditch.
"It's Crumple-Horned Snorkack Ron. And you'd better watch who you're calling a loony." Hermione said, narrowing her eyes at him, causing Ron to take a step back.
Ron put his hand in front of his chest and shook his head. "N-No Hermione, I'm not calling you a loony. I was talking about Loony Lovegood, she's an old friend of Ginny's who used to come around the Burrow to play. She was always talking about these made up creatures like Snorlaxes and Naggies and Suudowoodos. That's why everyone calls her Loony."
"Not everyone dear brother." Fred said.
"You see, unlike yourself, we're willing to believe in something we can't see." Continued by George.
"And even if we don't believe, we, once again unlike you, don't get our fun by taking the mickey out of little girls."
"Of course Fred, it could just be widdle Ronald's way of showing he cares."
"Ah yes, like that time you put that shrinking charm on Eliza's knickers?"
"Exactly, maybe ickle Ronniekins has a crush on poor Luna."
Fred nodded sagely at that. "Poor indeed, if she's the center of Ron's affections."
Harry, who had been following the conversation as if he were watching a tennis match, began purring at the teasing his friend was under. Had he been in human form, he would be chuckling at the antics of the twins.
Mr. Weasley shook his head as Ron opened up his mouth to retort. "Now now boys, no need to stand her and argue in the Granger's house. Though I do wish we had more time to spend here." During the twin's bit, he had been looking around the room, eyeing the TV with keen interest. "You can argue all you like when you get home. Fred, George, grab Hermione's trunk and we'll be on our way."
Hermione looked at Harry as he jumped off the trunk as the twins approached. "Mr. Weasley, is it alright if I bring the Snorkack with me to the Burrow? I was thinking of taking him to Hogwarts and showing him to Hagrid, as long as you don't mind."
Mr. Weasley nodded, handing Fred and George some floo powder. "Not at all Hermione." He said, before handing some floo powder to Ron. Fred had stepped into the fireplace and disappeared with Hermione's trunk, followed shortly by George who was holding Crookshanks in his carrier. Ron went next, his ears still slightly red from being teased by the twins.
Once Ron was gone and the green flames had died down, Mr. Weasley turned to Hermione. "Now Hermione... did Professor Dumbledore tell you anything about where Harry is? We received an owl from Minerva this morning that said he was alright, but nothing else."
Hermione shook her head, bending down and picking up Harry. "No, all he said was that Harry was with someone who would take good care of him. He actually seemed more interested in the Snorkack here."
Mr. Weasley nodded. "I was hoping.. Molly is beside herself with worry. She feels like if Harry was taken in by anyone, it should have been us. Be prepared when you arrive, she'll probably bombard you with questions the second you step through the floo."
Harry shook his head. He was sure to get an earful from Mrs. Weasley once he returned to is human form for not going to the Burrow. He just prayed he saw her before he went to Hogwarts. While her screaming would be bad enough in person, it was much, much better then getting one of her infamous howlers in the middle of the great hall.
Mr. Weasley handed Hermione some floo powder, and she tossed it into the fireplace, stepping into the green flames. She held Harry close to her, as she called out "The Burrow." in a clear voice.
It turned out Molly didn't even wait for Hermione to step out of the fireplace before she started asking her questions. She grabbed Hermione's arm and pulled her roughly from the fireplace, causing Harry to tumble out of her arms and onto the floor.
"Well! Where's Harry? You've written to him haven't you? Professor Dumbledore went to your house personally. I don't know what that boy is thinking running off again. And what's worse, not even bothering to let us know he was okay!" Mrs. Weasley's face was red, whether from anger or lack of oxygen from her little tirade Hermione wasn't sure.
"Mum, we told you already Harry wasn't at Hermione's house." Ron said weakly, not wanting to draw his mother's ire onto himself.
Hermione nodded quickly. "It's true Mrs. Weasley. I haven't heard from Harry, and Professor Dumbledore came to my house to check on a magical creature I had found!"
Mrs. Weasley stared at Hermione, as if she was trying to tell whether or not she was lying to her. She finally sniffed, and nodded, before releasing her grip on Hermione's arm. At that moment the fireplace flared up with green flames again, and Mr. Weasley stepped out.
"Everyone made it back alright then?" He asked.
"Yes dear." Mrs. Weasley said. She turned back to Hermione. "Why don't you go ahead and take your things up to Ginny's room, and then we can all DEAR MERLIN WHAT IS THAT?"
Mrs. Weasley had drawn her wand, and had it leveled at the ground near Hermione's trunk. Everyone looked to see Harry the Snorkack, who shrank back at the sight of the wand.
Hermione was the first to snap out of her shock from Mrs. Weasley's outburst. She jumped between Harry and Mrs. Weasley. "NO! Mrs. Weasley it's okay. This is the magical creature that Dumbledore came to see, it's a Snorkack."
Harry peeked around Hermione's legs to see Mrs. Weasley giving him a look that he would normally associate with Draco Malfoy. He'd never seen her look like that at anything before, and it was quite unnerving.
"Molly, Hermione is taking it to school to show Hagrid. I told her it was fine if she brought it with her." Mr. Weasley said. There was silence for a few moments, until Mrs. Weasley gave a huff, and put her wand away.
"Of course dear... but it will have to stay outside. It can sleep in Arthur's shed." Mrs. Wealsey said.
Hermione nodded, before quickly picking Harry up and heading the back door. Once outside, she sighed in relief, and set Harry on the ground.
"Alright you... um.. Snorkack. That's very inconvenient you know, we'll have to think of a name for you. You'll have to stay out here for now okay? I don't want to make Mrs. Weasley mad. It'll only be for tonight anyways. We're leaving for the World Cup tomorrow." Not knowing what else to say, Hermione shrugged, and walked back towards the Burrow.
Harry sat outside, still shocked from the look on Mrs. Weasley's face. He had no doubt that without Hermione's interference, he would have been dodging curses from someone he considered.. not like a mother, but an Aunt like figure if nothing else.
Harry wandered around the yard behind the Burrow, looking for something to do. At first he chased the garden gnomes around for a little while, until they organized and started pelting him with pebbles and twigs. He had finally called it quits when one of the gnomes showed up riding on the head of an odd colored toad, and making strange gestures with his hands.
As night fell, Harry curled up near Arthur's shed and laid his head on his paws. He could hear the increase in activity in the Burrow. Honestly, if the Weasleys actually had neighbors, he'd be sure they could hear it as well... from the next town over or so. He wistfully found himself glad he was outside, away from the chaos that any gathering of the Weasleys eventually became. Not that he didn't enjoy the atmosphere from time to time, but it was nothing like being able to enjoy the night air in his Snorkack form. The sounds of the various bugs and animals were sharp in his ears, and he could smell the various trees and grass, and a hint of ink..
Harry's head shot up as he sniffed the air more deeply this time. There it was, the smell of ink and paper, not like the bookish smell that Hermione often had about her. The scent he caught was much fresher, ink that hadn't been applied to paper yet. There was another scent intermingled with the smell of ink, something Harry couldn't quite place and could only describe as flowery. The smell was making him nervous.
It took Harry a few moments to figure out exactly why the smell made him nervous. It smelled just like that girl from the other day. The one who had fed him and tried to get him to stick around for a picture... after mentioning the fact that some group would love to perform painful experiments on him. Harry felt a shiver run down his spine even remembering it.
But that girl was wherever her home was, he'd probably never run into her again so there was no use worrying...
Hermione didn't know what to make of the pair who had exited the Burrow's fireplace after dinner. A thin man with long white hair and a distracted gaze, and his blonde haired daughter. Mr. Weasley introduced them as the Lovegood family, Xenophilius and Luna. And if Xenophilius' gaze had a distracted look to it, then Luna's had a downright "out-to-lunch". Not that she wasn't paying attention to what was going on around her, but Hermione couldn't help but think that the girls' silvery gray eyes were looking beyond her. Almost as if she wasn't looking at Hermione herself, but something beyond...
Apparently the Lovegood family had come to see if the Weasleys were willing to let Luna stay with in their tent for the World Cup. Mr. Lovegood had gotten tickets since he was a reporter (at which Ron and Mrs. Weasley both rolled their eyes), but would not be attending because he had a lead on another story.
"Yes, I was quite surprised when I got an owl from none other then Ragnarok himself! Seems like he's finally willing to give an interview about how there's billions of galleons worth of gold locked away in the Hogwarts Founder's vaults, just sitting there all this time!" Mr. Lovegood explained, "Apparently the goblins have been keeping them safe because he is certain that eventually a wizard will travel from the future to our time and take some kind of ancient blood test that will show he is not only heir to the four founders, but also Merlin himself! So you see why I can't possibly go and report on something as trivial as the World Cup."
Ron coughed something that sounded suspiciously like loon, earning a glare from both Mr. and Mrs. Weasley.
"Of course Xenophilius, we'd love to have Luna join us, wouldn't we?" Mr. Weasley said, turning to his family. No one seemed too enthused with the idea, but they didn't speak out against it either.
"Splendid! Thank you so much. I'll be sure to drop Luna off at the portkey tomorrow morning then." Mr. Lovegood said. "Well come along then Luna, we have to get you all packed and ready for tomorrow."
Luna followed Mr. Lovegood to the fireplace, but stopped as she passed by Hermione. She gave Hermione that weird stare that made her feel like the girl was looking both through her and past her. Then, faster then Hermione could blink, Luna shot her hand forward and touched Hermione's shoulder, pulling what looked to be a black hair from it.
Hermione just stared in shock as the blonde girl look at the hair in her fingers. Luna examined it for a few moments, before her face split into the sunniest smile Hermione had ever seen. The girl's entire body seemed to suddenly exude excitement, and there was a light in her eyes that spoke of something beyond happiness, before she threw her arms around Hermione and squeezed her into a hug.
"So he found someone good to take care of him! Oh I can't wait to see him again, you'll bring him with you to the World Cup won't you?" Luna asked.
Hermione, still slightly shocked by Luna's actions, simply nodded. That seemed to be all the answer that Luna needed, as she released her hold on Hermione and actually skipped to the fireplace, throwing in a pinch of floo powder and disappearing in a flash of green flames.
The Weasley family looked at the bushy haired girl in confusion, but Hermione's face mirrored the same look. It was Mr. Weasley who finally broke the silence.
"Well, we should all probably head to bed now, we'll have to be up extra early tomorrow if we want to make the portkey."
They dispersed after that, Hermione and Ginny headed up to Ginny's room followed by Ron. As the two girls entered the room, Ron had one last thing to say.
"See, told you she was loony."
First, I would like to apologize for how long this update took. Honestly, it was mostly written for the better part of a year, but I had a very hard time finishing it. I hope to have the next update out before the end of the month, but have no fear, this story will not be abandoned.
Now, onto important business. I'm sure a lot of you have seen the recent snafu concerning FF dot net suddenly enforcing policy by banning authors and deleting stories without warning. While this isn't the place for further discussion, I highly encourage you to check the forums forum dot fanfiction dot net/topic/111772/63683250/
I've pledged my support, and just want to make sure others are aware of the situation. Please though, if you have any questions or comments for me about this particular situation send them through PM and not in the reviews :)
Next time, we'll see the World Cup, and the shenanigans that a imaginative girl and a magical creature can get up to when terrorists decide to crash the party.