Meet the Godparents
A/N – This story has changed greatly from when it was first begun. It never got to the ending that I had originally envisioned for one simple reason. The characters wouldn't let me. Whether it's better than my original thoughts I cannot say. Though it's appeared on a different site previously, this version has been cleaned up and had some of the problems created by switching gears in the middle of the story ironed out, hopefully.
That being said, all of the standard disclaimers apply. Anything recognizable from the Harry Potterverse is the property of JK Rowling and various corporate entities, and no infringement upon their rights is intended. This is simply an intellectual exercise in 'what if'.
And while it's never spelled out in canon, it would stand to reason that Tonks (even I won't risk the taboo on 'The-Name-That-Must-Not-Be-Uttered'.) selected a godmother for Teddy, and she would have been very responsible in that selection.
On the subject of feedback / reviews. I welcome any and all feedback, positive or negative. If you find something totally wrong, or something that really doesn't work of you, I want to hear about it. I'm not saying that I'd pull apart the story to change something, but if I've totally missed the boat on something, feel free to let me know.
Oh, and one last thing. While it really doesn't start that way, this story is H/Hr. Harmony. Full speed ahead on the good ship Pumpkin Pie. To those who cringe at the thought of that, this might not be the story for you. For those of you that cringe at the thought of canon pairings (H/G , Hr/R), take a deep breath and relax. That part of the story will be over before you know it. Normally I don't give things away like that, but I'd hate for anyone to feel they were mislead by either the listed pairing or the beginning of the story.
Chapter 1 – A Monday Morning Meeting
11 May, 1998 – Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry
It had only been nine short days since the events that had come to be called "The Battle of Hogwarts", but the wizarding world had changed drastically and was in the process of still more change. Victory and loss, celebrations and mourning. The exhilaration of finding fellow survivors tempered by the heart wrenching goodbyes as loved ones and respected friends were buried. The fear and uncertainty as survivors searched for any sign of the missing.
And at the center of this emotional storm had been Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, and Ron Weasley. Harry insisted that he would attend every funeral, meet every survivor who needed reassuring and visit every site where refugees huddled to tell them that the long night of Voldemort's reign of terror had lifted.
Hermione accompanied Harry because she knew what each meeting, funeral, and gathering would cost him. Looking behind the façade that he erected for the outside world to see, she knew exactly how close to the edge he was skirting each time he walked into a room or up to a graveside. And that was besides the fact that by his side was where she had always been. Now that things were promising to become 'normal', she couldn't see any reason to change, even if she had wanted to.
Ron was there with them as often as he could until they were certain that everything the three of them could do had been done. He spent as much time as he could with his family, mourning the loss of Fred, but he was with Harry and Hermione whenever he could, when they appeared to meet, console or congratulate.
This particular morning, however, Harry was alone. Though the stairs to Headmistress McGonagall's office were still guarded by gargoyles, the guardians merely nodded to Harry as he approached.
"Right you are," said the one.
"You're on the list. Stop thinking like a ruddy student," remarked the other as Harry passed them and ascended the stairs.
Coming to a stop just outside the door, Harry could hear the muted tones of conversation. Preparing to knock, he was surprised, for a moment, when he heard the voice of Albus Dumbledore.
"Harry, stop standing on ceremony and come in."
Pushing the door open, Harry blinked at the bright May sunshine streaming through the windows into the office. Nowhere were the changes that had occurred recently more evident than in the office of Hogwarts' Headmistress.
Gone were most of Dumbledore's busy contraptions. Gone was Fawkes' stand. Directly behind the Headmistress' desk, the portrait of Albus Dumbledore was smiling and nodding cheerily at Harry as he came into the room.
The décor of the office was definitely different. Professor McGonagall's Scots heritage was evident in the use of tartans around the room. A pair of claymores, glowing with enchantments, now flanked the case that housed the Sword of Godric Gryffindor.
Looking around, Harry realized that there were several others joining Headmistress McGonagall and the portraits this early Monday morning.
Casting a baleful look at Albus' portrait, Professor McGonagall rose from the chair she was sitting in and came towards the door. Over her shoulder, Harry could see Kingsley Shacklebolt, the Interim Minister of Magic, and Andromeda Tonks, who was holding a sleeping Teddy Lupin in her arms.
"Harry, thank you for coming to meet with us on such short notice." Extending her hand, the Headmistress took his and smiled at him. "And please forgive Albus; he seems to forget that not everyone appreciates his little theatrics."
Taking her hand, Harry was a bit amazed at the change in demeanor in his former professor. While he had always suspected that she was more approving of him than her public demeanor suggested, his eyes started to mist at the display of genuine affection and concern, he could see in her eyes now.
"It's quite alright, Professor. I haven't yet gotten into the habit of lying in, so I was up and in the kitchen when your patronus arrived."
Her smile disappeared, replaced by an unusually severe look.
"Mr. Potter, unless you really want Gryffindor House to start the next school year with negative points, I'm going to have to insist on a proper level of behavior from you. Remember, you three never officially withdrew from school, so there's still the little matter of you skiving off an entire year to be dealt with." Letting her words hang in the air for several seconds, she studied Harry intently.
"I'm sorry Professor, I'll try. What is it you wish for me to do?" Harry was shocked by the laughter coming from Kingsley and Dumbledore at his distress, and he noticed that Mrs. Tonks was desperately trying not to laugh. Looking back, he could see that Professor McGonagall was biting her lip to keep from smiling.
"Unless you want house points taken away, I'm going to have to insist that you start addressing me by my given name. I know, as students, you're convinced that my parents gifted me with the name 'Professor' when I was a wee lass. I assure you, my name is Minerva, and you should learn to use it."
Drawing an astonished Harry along with her, she walked over to the sitting area where the others awaited. Harry noticed, as he sat, that there was an empty chair next to the one that Minerva indicated for him.
"Minerva, leave the poor boy alone. It takes time to get used to not being a student, and he's had precious little of that this last year." Chuckling at the gobsmacked look on Harry's face, Andromeda Tonks' eyes were twinkling as she patted Teddy gently on the back.
"Besides, with your plan, there's a very good chance that he'll be calling you 'Professor' come the start of term." Looking over at Harry, Andromeda smiled reassuringly.
"I know the last week has been hard on everyone, but I imagine it's been especially difficult for you. Remus and my daughter told me a good deal about you and your friends, and I realize that everything that has happened after that horrible day has been very difficult for you to deal with."
"Mrs. Tonks, I can't imagine anything more difficult than you losing your husband, daughter, and son-in-law like that. Whatever I've been through pales in insignificance."
"Piffle, young man. I don't know you very well, yet, but from what I've heard I know that you have taken all of this as your personal responsibility. You've blamed yourself for everyone that died that day, probably everyone who's died since the night Tom Riddle killed your parents. Remus chose you to be godfather to little Teddy for two reasons. The first is that he trusted you to do whatever it takes to make certain that his child grows up to be as wonderful a person as you are." Pausing, she smiled as Harry began to blush, furiously.
"And the second is that he felt that Teddy would be good for you. If you're going to be a proper godfather for my grandson, then you won't be able to sit around blaming yourself for things totally outside your control."
Clearing his throat, Kingsley waited for Harry's attention. Seeing the raw emotions in the young man's eyes, he tried to project reassurance to him as he began.
"Harry, what Andromeda is trying to tell you is that everyone here has nothing but the deepest admiration for what you accomplished and the sacrifices you made. In here, it's not the fawning praise that annoys you so, but the true admiration of people who have done what they can do and have made sacrifices themselves."
Looking around the room, he was including the portraits of the former Headmasters and Headmistresses who were shamelessly eavesdropping on the conversation.
"In here, you're not the 'Boy Who Lived', the 'Wizard Who Won', or anything else that someone has hung on you. In here, you're Harry Potter, a young man who stepped up and made sacrifices that the rest of us can barely comprehend and faced things that no one should ever have to face.
"My source tells me that you're not as 'well' as you make out, and that you need to start allowing your friends and family to help you. And part of that begins today"
Holding up his hand to forestall any questions, he smiled. "As Minster of Magic, rarely do I get to do anything that totally pleases me. But this morning is something that I will truly enjoy. Signing off on the choices Remus and Nymphadora made regarding the godparents of young Teddy, is a responsibility that I take great pleasure in. Especially since it will require you to work closely in concert with your 'better half' to become an effective parenting team. I know that you two will be able to contribute greatly to Teddy's upbringing and allow Andromeda to adjust to raising a child."
Looking from Kingsley to Minerva to Andromeda, Harry saw that all three were smiling at him.
"There's a godmother?"
Looking up towards Snape's portrait trying to find the source of a snort of disbelief, he could see his former Potions Master shaking his head while Dumbledore, who was sharing the frame with him, leaned on his chair and smiled broadly.
"I'll do my best to be the godfather Teddy needs, but how can I be certain that this other person will be willing to work with me or be truly concerned about Teddy's welfare?"
Frustration began to leak into his voice as he turned to Andromeda. "I trust that Tonks made an inspired choice for a godmother, but in case no one's told you I tend to be a bit moody and difficult to work with at times."
On a roll, Harry didn't notice that the others in the room were smiling broadly at him or that the door to the office had quietly opened behind him.
"My best mate constantly reminds me I'm a git and a prat, and if it weren't for Hermione I probably would have ended up as dragon food before I got three steps my first year, much less defeat Voldemort. Does this person know what she's getting into having to work with me?"
"Harry, lighten up. If I hadn't figured out how to handle you after seven very long years, Tonks never would have picked me to be your partner in this."
Stunned, Harry stood slowly, turned around and gaped as he saw Hermione leaning against the doorframe, smiling knowingly at him.
Straightening up with a cheeky grin, she dropped into an impromptu curtsey.
"Hermione Jane Granger, godmother, at your service."