It's been a year since Mr. Damian Hastings has heard from his daughter. One lonely year, when he found the brick house abandoned, with no trace of where she and her family had gone. What's even more curious was the lack of his beautiful granddaughter's presence in any of the pictures that were hung in the family room. It was then when he knew that the Granger family, the only family he had left, went into hiding.
He was no stranger to war. In fact, he spent his teenage years, making toys during World War II which was the result of not being physically fit enough to join the army. His Toy-making hobby became a hit to lonely boys and girls who were waiting for their fathers and brothers to come back from the battles and soon, from the small town where he used to live, word of mouth spread like wildfire throughout the country about his toys. Thus, the Hastings Toy Emporium was born.
When his granddaughter wrote to him about her adventures in the world of magic, he knew that it would come to this point and his brave granddaughter would be at the center of it. Just like her mother, he thought as he shook his head with fondness. His daughter Helena had always been such a spitfire. He remembered that one occasion when she stood up against the bullying Head Girl in the Private School where she studied in. He and his beloved late wife were called in the middle of office hours to pick-up their daughter who had scratch-marks and smudged traces of her make-up. His wife was positively peeved but he has never been more proud of his daughter. He felt the same towards her granddaughter.
Hermione barged into his office, bawling her eyes out as she told him about what she had done to her parents and what she has been through. At first, he got upset that his sensible granddaughter ever thought of such preposterous idea to erase her parent's memories and send them to Australia.
After a couple of deep breaths, and a lot of thinking, he realized that she did it out of love and she came to him for a reason. "Grandfather, I'm getting them back and I need your help." He urged the brown haired girl to continue. "I currently have two wards under my protection. They are schoolmates of mine and they were in the other side of the war or at least one of them was."
"Speak no more. I will look after them and keep them occupied while you're gone. However my dear, what if they would want to leave?" He asked with concern.
"They will not leave. Their lives are in danger; they're wanted men by people who bore grudges besides, I also have my friends Harry and Ron who are protecting them as orders from the Minister of Magic. They will also join the other two." She tittered, unsure how her grandfather would take the information of him having to babysit four young men. Yes, even her best friends need looking after, now more so than ever.
"Hermione, puppet, I have more room and more tasks to exhaust four men in a lifetime. I can take care of it. Just promise me that you'll come back with your parents alive and safe, which goes the same for you, young lady." The witch looked crestfallen as her grandfather accosted her in a way that reminded her so much of Professor Dumbledore. "I will not be able to bear seeing you more scarred than you are now."
With a final hug, his granddaughter exited the oak doors of his office with a weary smile. Oh how he longed for her true smile that lit up his life from the moment he saw her as a baby. It was then when he vowed that he would do anything to get the smile back from her beautiful face.
That meeting happened just last week and now, as written in a letter delivered by a rather imposing owl, he will meet her friends in front of his office's fireplace. As to how will that happen, he will never know and as curious as he was about 'real' magic, he knew better than to exert his old mind over things that were not his to find out.
Ten minutes into lunch time, four consecutive pops were heard from inside the CEO's room. The employees merely thought that the old man was playing one of his old toys. Little did they know, that inside the company head's office, a red head cleaning his robes, a smiling boy with round spectacles, a grinning Italian and an annoyed platinum haired young man stepped outside the fireplace like it's second nature to them.
"You're late." Mr. Hastings said as he looked at the four men with mischief. "My granddaughter informed me that you'll be arriving 5 minutes earlier." The young men stood stoically, unsure how to react at the old man's stern statement.
"We apologize, Mr. Hastings. My name is Harry Potter and these are Ron Weasley, and Blaise Zabini." With a deep sigh, Harry continued with the last introduction. "Lastly, this is Draco Malfoy and he has a perfectly good explanation as to why we were late." The red head and Italian held back a chuckle.
"Good afternoon Mr. Hastings, we were late because of your granddaughter." The man with gray hair that was pulled back with gel raised an eyebrow at the tall blonde man with the most beautiful eyes he has ever seen yet those eyes were filled with so much weariness that he saw something familiar about him that he could not place. "You see, she started one of her lectures thirty minutes before we're due, but she ranted on until we had to practically run out towards the floo." The Italian boy who has a rich olive skin to complement his hazel eyes nodded in agreement nervously. The red head, Ron, gulped. The only one who looked composed out of the four was Harry, who he knew from his granddaughter, to be the bravest young man in his world.
"No need to explain, I was just joshing you!" The man approached the unlikely group and shook hands with each one of them with a twinkle in his eye. He heard the impeccably dressed blonde sigh with relief; he had a feeling that the young man had enough of scolding and so little guidance in his lifetime that he almost had to assume that there is a punishment waiting for him, the poor lad.
The old man told the group to take a seat while he went out of his office. "Everyone, may I have your attention." The whole floor was stunned silent. "We're having an emergency meeting in an hour. I suggest that you have your lunch now." He turned to his secretary with a smile. "Please make sure that that no employee on this floor went down for Lunch, and you can join them as well." The secretary, a woman in her mid-thirties, gave a grateful smile towards her boss before she joined the other employees on their way out.
After making sure that the whole floor was cleared, he led his guests towards the conference room just next door to his office.
"Alright, let's talk about the details of your visit." The men sat on the awfully comfortable leather chairs. "First of all, you'll have to stop calling me Mr. Hastings. Please call me Ian. Now, since you'll be living with me, I suggest that you can also work for me so you won't be bored out of your arses. Now, who among you has experience with finance?"
By the end of the meeting, it was settled that Blaise Zabini would be assigned in Finance. Ron Weasley will be in the Marketing and Advertising team while Harry Potter is going to be in the Research and Development team. "What about Malfoy?" Zabini asked with an amused expression, a Malfoy working in a muggle toy company is almost in the Top 3 signs of the apocalypse.
"Draco will be working under my direct supervision." At that moment, a loud knock was heard from outside, signaling the start of the afternoon meeting.
Thanks for reading. After years of absence, I'm back writing Fanfics.. :) To think that I'm 2 years out of college and I'm already working my ass up in the corporate ladder, fanfiction writing proved to be the best escape from the real world. I am currently looking for Beta Readers.
I do not own Harry Potter.. If I did, no.. I'm still not... HAHAHA!