The Lion And The Snake Scales Of Justice

Chapter 9

Investigating Potter Manor

"Wow, this place is amazing, Harry!" said Hermione gazing around at the manor. It was so old fashioned everything looked like antiques. The chairs, the tables, the units, even the china was older than anything she'd seen. This place hadn't been updated in a long time, she'd summarise that at least three generations had passed since someone stepped foot in here or rather since someone lived here. "The hall is big enough to use as a duelling arena for the Defence class!"

"Unless of course they are eating lunch here, all the working they will do will exhaust them." Draco pointed out absently. Unlike Hermione, Ron and Luna he wasn't overly impressed with the manor. He lived in one so it was to be expected, and a more updated one at that. His mother would have been shocked at the state of the place, probably would have insisted on updating it making it more modern and tasteful.

"All this stuff will need to be put in your vault…or it will all go missing." said Ron looking around, they were definitely Gryffindors if the living room was anything to go by. Like the Weasley's though he knew the Potter's had all been in Gryffindor as well. "I mean this stuff will grab a fortune and they will know it - it won't matter how grateful they are that you are helping them."

"He does have a point," agreed Draco reluctantly, desperate families would do anything to see another month where the have shelter. The vases could fetch up to over one hundred galleons, depending on who was there on the day of the Gringotts auction. He hadn't seen one go for anything under than ninety galleons though. He had seen his share of auctions, both his parents had loved attending them. He of course had been forced to sit through it like a proper 'pureblood'. Especially when his father was there, who took no mercy or pity on his only son and heir.

"How about just spelling it to stick?" asked Hermione, gazing at the sage green bowl with the large china jug in it, she'd seen one once. Weren't they for washing? Why would they have them in the living room it made no sense to her. Shaking her head refusing to think on it more, wizards were a little weird when it came to things like that she knew.

"It's up to Harry, isn't it?" said Neville shrugging his shoulders. "Oh by the way I've been thinking, Ollivander might be the only known Wand-maker but have you thought about asking the people down here? There might be an unofficial one?" questioned the Longbottom heir.

"Isn't that a bit risky?" asked Ron frowning.

"No, I'll make sure they are up to scratch, I learned a bit about wands and wand-making. You know Borgin and Burke has dozens of wands, they aren't all from Dark Wizards…." stated and wondered Draco.

"Why would he have wands? Nobody sane would give up their wands for anything." said Harry, staring at Draco as he wandered around the place.

"It probably wasn't their own, either ones they'd got in battle or relatives." said Draco.

"Wizards are buried with their wands!" said Ron quickly, looking at Draco as if he was nuts.

"Most families do, I agree, but not all of them." said Draco, in explanation not rising to the anger Ron was displaying. "You forget some families cant afford to bury their dead."

Ron's anger deflated as quickly as it had begun, nodding his head to acknowledge Draco's point. It was true, some families had to burn their beloved family members remains. It was not something wizards like to do, since they believed they needed a funeral to pass on to the other side of the veil. Burning them was seen as a sign of the souls wandering lost for all time.

"It will take us ages to get this place emptied, I mean look at the sitting room its packed with stuff! I mean what the hell are the bedrooms going to be like?" asked Harry bewildered.

"Not necessarily, you have control over the wards, all you need to do is empty the places the students will come to. The rest of the rooms you can demand locked down, and nobody will get into them, not even us." explained Draco, "I've never experienced it myself, but I know how it works since my father explained how the wards worked. After all I would be taking control of Malfoy Manor at one point in my life." he wouldn't be going back there until the Dark Lord was defeated. Once he was he would be bloody redecorating absolutely everywhere and cleansing everything thoroughly. Or rather his mother would, she did have excellent taste, but he would draw the line at a few things he was sure.

"I'll help you Harry, I can look it up!" said Hermione immediately, as always her thirst for new information knew no bounds.

"Thanks, Mione," said Harry, grinning wryly. "But food Draco? There is no way we can do that."

"Course you can, and it will be free." said Draco, moving off towards the kitchen and looking outside. He pointed to the garden and Harry moved over to see what he was going on about. His eyes widened when he noticed it, there were fields full of cattle, with one large vegetable patch that looked a bit overgrown but not too badly.

"I don't know, Draco, I mean we would need House-Elves to keep up with this! I mean I couldn't keep up with the demand - none of us could and teach them even if we are doing it at the weekend." said Harry thoughtfully.

"It would encourage the families to agree, they would have one less meal to worry about and their kids would get something substantially fulfilling." said Draco confidently.

"I suppose so, but I think this is going to go down the toilet, there is no way all of us can teach them everything they need to know in a year." said Harry, shaking his head, beginning to doubt himself.

"Of course we can do it, Harry. Between all of us we will make sure of it. Unlike at Hogwarts we aren't going to give them quizzes or have days where we sit and make them read books. They will be getting practical work each weekend. Depending on how well they do, we might even be able to teach three spells to them during our classes." said Hermione adamantly.

"Hermione there is only six of us," said Harry quietly.

Hermione looked at the others, but she found the same doubt in their own eyes as in Harry's. They really didn't believe they could pull this off. Taking a deep breath, she began to wonder how best to bolster their spirits and make them at least try. "So we quit then do we? Leave them to fend for themselves? How many others have probably did the same thing? They need our help more than they need our doubt. If we are wrong then at least they have wands and learned some magic. If we are good enough maybe they can even pass their O.W.L's which will legally allow them to use a wand wherever they want. We can do that much surely? If we fail we fail, it was because we couldn't, not because we didn't have the guts."

"Hermione's right you guys, we've come this far…we owe it to ourselves to at least try." said Neville, realizing she was right. They were just trying to get out because they didn't have the guts to think they could pull this off. If they failed then at least they could say they tried. Back out now they would forever wonder if they could have done it or not and it wasn't something Neville wanted on his mind all the time.

"Remember how well everyone did in the D.A? if anyone can do it its you Harry." sad Ron, smiling at his girlfriend in pride.

Harry sighed, running his hand though his hair well, when Hermione put it like that he realized he didn't have a choice. The children in Knockturn Alley deserved better, and Dumbledore wasn't helping them because of where they lived. It wasn't fair, but Harry had learned early in life that it wasn't fair regardless of where you lived. He would do his best, hopefully it would be enough.

"Alright then, I guess we could use Dobby to help us get everything put away in my vault." said Harry, "Let's go and see the rest of the place."

So they did, they investigated everywhere down the stairs, including two guest rooms that were sparsely furnished so he wouldn't have to worry about them at least. Astronomy could be held outside in the gardens as well as Flying lessons so there was no need for them to be up the stairs. The potions lab was big enough for the students, but he wasn't sure he had the guts to try and teach them everything. "All of us are going to have to teach them potions, you realize this don't you?" said Harry looking around the lab.

"Yeah, its too dangerous for the amount of students we should have. At least there is only six tables which means we can each supervise one." said Draco.

"I don't know about that," said Neville worried.

"You'll be fine, Neville, to begin with it will just be basic potions." said Luna, speaking for the first time.

"Nothing past O.W.L level, if they want to learn passed then they will need to do it themselves." said Harry seriously. "If they are serious we can give them books, I'm sure there will be plenty donated this year if we keep up with the publicity on what we are doing."

"I don't know how they can just give up their books," grumbled Hermione, the number of books they'd received had been immense.

Draco and Ron just laughed in amusement, while Luna just snorted. Some things just wouldn't change.

"Do you think we have enough time to visit everyone? Or will we have to wait until the weekend?" wondered Luna, they had things they wanted to give to the families. Clothes that had been donated, and even food, which would remain fine as long as it was under preservation charms.

"There's no way, at least I can't I have training tonight." said Harry immediately, and regretfully. "I want to be there to see them, so I hope you will wait until the weekend."

"It will give us more time, and they would be more willing to let us in during the day." suggested Draco.

"Alright, I guess its Saturday we go then," said Luna, not the least bit put out. Which was tomorrow.

"At least with the map nobody will be left out," said Ron, the map Harry, Snape, Draco, Luna and Neville had created of the Alley would ensure that. Harry had wanted to make it like the Marauders map, but Hermione was still trying to figure out everything that had gone into making it. All but one of the Marauders were dead, Pettigrew, Sirius and James only Remus Lupin aka Moony survived. They weren't sure about asking him, Harry wasn't sure he could be trusted - he was too deeply into Dumbledore's pocket. No doubt gratitude for the fact he had been allowed to attend Hogwarts.

"I hope Bill will get in touch early, I don't want to stick around Hogwarts too long." stated Harry, as he began wandering from the Potions Lab. "Do you know how to take control of the wards Draco?" he wanted control of them before he left tonight.

"Sure, take you wand out." said Draco stopping, causing Harry to wander back a bit and remove his wand.

"Repeat after me, word for word and don't screw up, its extremely important." said Draco, making sure Harry realized how vital it was.

"Alright," said Harry, as the others remained quiet so Harry could concentrate.

"ue me custodiarum, vinculum cum me, et ego in domum regere," rattled Draco, in perfect Latin, with good reason as he'd taken lessons when he was a young boy.

Harry's eyes were wide as he began to say the words as well, a little less eloquently than Draco.

"ue me custodiarum, vinculum cum me, et ego in domum regere!" said Harry, sighing in relief when he got it right. He knew he had as the wards immediately surrounded him, he could feel everything surrounding the wards. He would know if somehow someone got into his manor uninvited. The feeling was overwhelming, not the magic itself but the feeling of having a home, a place that was his alone.

"I don't think my Manor is quite as well kept at this one," confessed Neville as they began to relax.

"Maybe we should just have all lessons here then? It would save a lot of time." suggested Harry.

"It would, but are you sure you want to do that Harry?" said Hermione.

"I wouldn't have suggested it otherwise," said Harry honestly.

"It is a good idea," said Luna nodding thoughtfully, "It really would save time, help us teach them more."

"Alright then, here full time it is." stated Harry, "I really need to get going, so come on!" they all knew as well as him just how irritated Severus could get if he was late. He was a man who demanded punctuality and obedience, if he didn't get it he was a crabby bloody nightmare.

Draco laughed as he grabbed some Floo powder knowing what Harry was thinking. Stepping in he flung the powder at the bottom and was whisked away back to Hogwarts. The others all quickly followed him, before sliding under Harry's Invisibility cloak leaving Professor Snape's quarters and making their way to the ROR.

This story has no muse left, honestly I am finding it very difficult to continue but I am trying since I don't like abandoning any of my stories. Still at least it was updated no matter how short it is, maybe one day the muse will return better and stronger than ever :) anyway there you go R&R please and yup no questions that's how bad the muse is...