When Harry is finally able to settle down and finally find a peace within himself as a teacher at Hogwarts after the war, he is immersed in the magic of the school, and finally feels at home. But it soon becomes clear to him that his story is far from over. Faced with the duty of reliving his "glorious" past for the sake of the curious wizarding world, he finds himself falling helplessly in love with the memory of his dead headmaster.
I own nothing. *Salutes J.K*
I have other things in store for the world.
Warning! This is slash! (Male/male romance) If you don't like it, don't read it.
At the moment, everything is reasonably PG-13, but this could change as the story progresses.
The sun shone gently upon Hogwarts one particularly pleasant summer's evening, caressing the castle in a golden glow, the stone and glass windows twinkling as if in mischievous knowing of the events that were to follow from this day on.
This was mirrored by the stone of the village that was overlooked but was not dominated by the comparatively magnificent castle. Hogsmeade seemed to twinkle in the same way as if it were in on the castle's joke.
The inhabitants of the village were peacefully going about their day. There was never much to do during the summer, as the students of the school – who were their more frequent patrons - were away for the holidays.
Birds chirped relentlessly, as the decent of the sun grew steadily more imminent. Their efforts however were momentarily interrupted as a discerning pop was heard, marking the unmistakable sound of one who had just Apparated.
After a seeming hesitation, the birds continued their song, albeit a little louder as if indignant at the interruption.
Harry Potter, who had caused the offending sound, was straightening his thin button down summer robes, which were the kind of green that blended easily with the grass and trees that surrounded him on all sides. He had not noticed the amusement of the architecture or the indignation of the nesting flock of seasonal songbirds.
No, Harry generally did not like Apparition, and was concentrating wholly on the recovery of air into his lungs and oxygen to his brain, before pointedly setting out down the path towards the front gates of the Hogwarts grounds.
As soon as he had passed though the high wall that marked out the castle's boundary, he seemed to visibly relax and walk at a much slower, contented pace.
Reaching the top of the stone steps, and with a sense of mounting anticipation; he pushed the doors open into the Entrance Hall.
A weight in his chest seemed to lift, along with the corners of his mouth. He was home.
He picked his way easily to the Headmistress' office, and was sharply aware upon arriving at the gargoyle guarding the familiar moving staircase that, according to the letter sent to him by the headmistress, the password had not changed since he had left.
The name stabbed at Harry's chest as the gargoyle sprang to the side, anger bubbling inside him at the reminder that others were not as willing to forget the painful past as he was.
He climbed the spiral staircase and knocked.
Harry did a double take at the sound of the voice. It wasn't the stern female voice he'd been expecting.
Harry opened the door tentatively and looked over to the desk where Professor McGonagall was sitting, writing hurriedly on a piece of parchment.
In response, she jabbed an accusing thumb directly behind her; Dumbledore's portrait.
Harry felt the same stab he'd felt at having to voice the man's name at the foot of the stairs.
Dumbledore's portrait was looking rather sheepish.
"My apologies. Even after twenty years, I forget that this is no longer my office."
"You'll get used to it, Albus!" Spoke a high pitched jovial male voice from another one of the portraits, though Harry couldn't tell which it had come from.
There then came a general chatter amongst the portraits, each seeming to compete against how long it had been before they'd broken out of the habit of answering the door.
The portrait of Dumbledore was not listening however. He was smiling down at Harry, eyes twinkling.
Harry caught himself defiantly and turned what had threatened to be a watery smile into a glare and wrenched his eyes away from the offending painting.
"Ridiculous," he thought out loud.
"Quite," said McGonagall, "But you don't have to endure it everyday."
She put down her quill and rolled up the parchment on which she'd been writing.
"Now Mr. Potter, please take a seat."
Harry took the seat which was so familiar to him, and yet unfamiliar, as if the presence of a new owner of the room now required him to reacquaint himself with it.
"Well, I'm sure that since you're here, you have not resigned to disregarding the offer that has been put to you?"
"Am I that easy to read?"
"Yes, but only because I have know you since you were a baby, Harry."
Harry gave a small smile.
"You know me very well professor. But I know you too. It wasn't your idea to offer me the job, was it?"
Dumbledore's portrait chuckled. Harry and McGonagall turned to look at it.
"It seems that the war has blessed you with new insight. Or is it the influence of Miss Granger?"
Harry's face was impassive as he answered.
"I suppose it's a bit of both."
McGonagall turned back to Harry,
"You're quite right Potter. It was not me who suggested you. However, as soon as it was suggested, it was clear to me that really, the role should go to no other."
"Are you interested?"
"Yes, absolutely. I've had enough of dark witches wizards to last me several lifetimes. Perhaps through teaching I can avoid young people making the decisions that lead them to become dark."
"Then I am satisfied. Welcome back to Hogwarts, Harry. Term starts on the 1st of September, but I expect staff to be back and settled two days before at the latest. I want lesson plans for each of your classes for the entire first term in time for the staff meeting on the 24th of August in the staff room."
McGonagall stood and held out a hand.
Harry let out a long breath and followed, shaking the proffered hand gratefully.
"Thank you very much, professor."
"Minerva," she corrected.
"Minerva. Blimey, that's going to take some getting used to. I'll get my things and start moving in right away."
McGonagall – or rather, Minerva – smiled.
"Congratulations Harry," said the portrait behind Minerva.
Harry's expression became stony as he looked towards the oil based impression of Dumbledore.
With a quick nod and smile to his new boss, he exited the office abruptly, determined not to look back.
Even that painting's blue eyes sparkled.
Harry quickened his step down the corridors, as far away from the oil-made replica of his mentor as he could.
A/N: Sorry for yet another chapter replacement! But I noticed after reading through the first chapter for the umpteenth time, I realised that for some reason, I wrote that there had been four years since Dumbledore's death. It's actually been twenty years! Sorry about that!