The Lost Summer
Summary: Harry won the war! So, why is he sitting all alone at Grimmauld Place while everyone else is off celebrating? Well, maybe it's time our hero took a little vacation and enjoyed the lost summer.
Harry Potter created by: JK Rowling
I do not own these characters and I do not seek to profit from this story. However, If I did own it, Ginny would always be hot, Hermione would always be sexy, and Gabrielle would be several years older and wearing lots of lace and satin.
WARNING: This story contains scenes of extreme silliness, perverted humor, and mood swings too fast to see. You have been warned that this is not to be taken too seriously.
Category: AU. Comedy. Romance.
English will generally not be italicized.
French will always be italicized.
Chapter 1: Boredom
Harry Potter was bored. No, that would be like saying the ocean was a little damp. He had passed boredom almost a week ago and was well on his way to being absolutely and utterly apathetic. That really wasn't a good thing for him to be right now. It was the summer after his defeat of Tom Riddle, better known as Voldemort, and it was supposed to be the best summer of his life. Unfortunately, it hadn't worked out that way so far.
Originally the plan was for him to accompany Hermione and Ron to retrieve her parents, but with the blossoming of their new relationship Harry had stepped aside in order to allow them some time together. This was directly the cause of his boredom. Not wanting Mrs. Weasley to know that her youngest son was going to be spending a great deal of time alone with a girl, translated to shagging like mad, Harry had not told her that he was tagging along. This meant he was unable to go anywhere near the Weasley's, including Ginny, and dared not step foot in any magical settlement in England for fear of the press splashing his face all over the papers. So, here he sat, alone in Number 12 Grimmauld Place except for a slightly barmy old house elf.
"This bites," muttered Harry as he finished cleaning yet another old room by hand. "This was supposed to be a great summer, but I'm sitting here like a lump while everyone else it celebrating. How fair is that?"
Cleaning the rooms by hand was just a distraction to keep him busy, but even that proved to be a waste as it really just gave him more time to wallow in his boredom. Probably not the best thing for him considering he had already begun discussing the merits of painting Sirius' old room purple with Kreacher. No, boredom was a bad thing right now, but it seemed to be Harry's only option, at least till Ron and Hermione got back. It wasn't as if he could go take a vacation of his own while they were gone.
Now that was an interesting idea. After making amends to the Goblins he had been informed that the Potters and the Blacks both had considerably more money then he was previously aware of. In point of fact, he was bloody stinking fabulously rich, at least according to his account manager, Grabass. Yes, he had an account manager named Grabass, which in and of itself was shocking, but the news that he was the wealthiest person in all of Europe and Great Britain had stopped the snickering at the Goblin's name. Add to that the numerous properties he owned all over the world, the countless shares in companies both Muggle and Magical, and one or two companies he owned outright and Harry earned more in interest daily then most countries did yearly.
"You could purchase your own country off of just the Black investments alone," Grabass had informed him after Harry woke up from fainting at the news of his wealth.
Secretly he had paid off all the debts of the Weasley family and then the Grangers. Oh, let's not forget the "scholarships" that had paid for the next two generations of Muggle-born students to attend Hogwarts for free. Still, even with all that money being used, Harry had not even dented his fortune. So what if he created a trust fund for Teddy that would insure the boy never had to work. So what if he then made sure that Andromeda Tonks moved into a mansion with servants to help her out, it still didn't come close to affecting his overall available liquid assets. In other words, he was loaded and he hadn't spent a knut on himself yet.
Walking into his office, formerly one of the second floor bedrooms, Harry grabbed the listing of all the properties he currently owned. It was a rather long list, though sadly most of the properties were in serious need of renovations thanks to sixteen years of neglect. This was due to Sirius being in prison and his parents being dead, so no one had been available to see to the properties upkeep considering he had no idea they even existed until recently. Kreacher had volunteered to clean them all, but given the elderly house elf's track record with cleaning, Harry had passed on the offer.
"I need a place that's in good condition, off the radar, and not so far away I can't get back right away if needed," muttered Harry as he leafed through the various sheets of paper. "Most of these places are wrecks currently. Really need to have Grabass get me an estimate for repairs."
He was just about to give it up as a bad idea, these places were in worse condition than Grimmauld Place had been, when something caught his eye. It was a rather roomy chateau with it's own private beach and dock located in the south of France near St. Tropez. There was a small enclave of magical families that lived in the area, mostly French Witches and Wizards, that owned large estates in the area. The whole place was under a gigantic Muggle repelling charm and supposedly the largest Fidelius charm ever created. Only the fact that he was looking at the property listing allowed him to even know it was there. It was also the only property he owned that was manned by a human staff as the laws of the area prevented house elves from being used.
"Slavery in any form, be it magical or financial is strictly prohibited," read Harry as he scanned over the property listing. "Fifteen bedrooms, an Olympic sized swimming pool even though it's right on the beach, a twelve car garage, two guest cottages, and a permanent staff of three living in their own house. Bloody hell, it's huge. Sounds brilliant!"
What followed was a very quick Floo call to Gringotts to make arrangements for his being out of the country. A Goblin popped over to take his picture for identification papers. It took all of twenty minutes for the Goblin to return with his passport, driver's license, and credit cards. Then of course Harry had to pack, which took no time at all considering he barely owned any clothes worth taking. He figured he could buy what he needed when he got there and if not, he could ask the grounds crew to help him. Two hours later and Harry was holding a portkey that would take him directly to the front foyer of his chateau. With a yank and a twirl, Harry was on his way.
A week later and Harry was a very contented young man. He was spending the majority of his time on the beach, soaking up the sun and wondering why he should ever leave. Yes, he had friends back in England, but that's what the Floo was for. Not to mention that no one gawked at him here. It was perfect as far as Harry was concerned. No one bothered him and he didn't bother anyone. He had even invited Ron and Hermione to come stay with him when they returned to England, though from the sounds of it they would be in Australia much longer than originally planned due to certain complications with Hermione's family. Hermione never stated what the complications were, but Ron's letter said that her parents were furious with her and it was going to be a while before they would even talk to her. Evidently her memory charms had not been as good as she thought and they did not appreciate being manipulated. So, it looked like Harry was going to have a bit longer vacation than he originally thought, not that he was complaining.
The Goblins had been forwarding on his mail from home and the latest package had included a letter from Ginny that left Harry a little confused. Not only was she already planning their wedding, a fact that left him a little nervous, but she was also trying to control him. It was subtle, but it was clear that she expected him to avoid any contact with other women and that when he got back she expected him to get a job working for Kingsley in the Ministry. The fact that she had no idea how wealthy he was might explain the one, but as they didn't have a formal relationship right now worried him about the other. Yes, he had deep feelings for Ginny, but even after his defeat of Voldemort they had not officially resumed their relationship. So, where was she getting this idea that he was ready for marriage? Oh, and don't forget she was talking about how she was going to play Quidditch professionally while he was slaving away at the Ministry. That seemed a bit unfair.
"Maybe I would like to play Quidditch professionally, has she ever thought about that?" he asked himself as he looked out over the ocean. "It's not like I can't afford to have fun for a while."
"Harry!" called a voice from the house. "You've got visitors!"
Harry turned to look at the house and smiled up at his house keeper, Mrs. Babcock. She was an older woman, he guessed her to be in her late fifties, though it was impossible to really tell and he was not about to ask. She was a slim woman with dark brown hair and carried about her an air of warmth that made Mrs. Weasley seem cold by comparison. She and her husband both worked at the chateau and had been looking after the place for years. Both were squibs originally from London and along with their son, Joseph, had cared for the chateau as if it was there own. Harry really enjoyed the Babcocks' company and quickly thought of them as a part of his family rather than just employees.
Standing next to Mrs. Babcock, and waving like crazy, were two little balls of blonde energy and excitement. Much to Harry's surprise he had found out that Pierre and Apoline Delacour owned the chateau right next door to his. He had only been here two days when he was taking a walk and a little blonde had tackled him to the ground. Yes, Gabrielle Delacour was VERY excited to see her hero once again and soon became a constant fixture at his home. The now eleven year old girl was spending the summer here with her parents and Harry was soon enjoying the friendship of the Delacour family. There was not a night that one of the other was not having dinner at each other's homes, with Harry being tutored in French by both of the adults. It was a fine time all around.
Today it looked like Gabrielle had brought a friend with her. The little girl looked to be about the same age as Gabrielle, and it was obvious from the hair color and facial features that the girl was part or whole Veela. That wasn't a problem for Harry, though he did have to remind himself that Veela children tended to use the dreaded "puppy-dog-pout" to devastating effect. With a wave of his hand to motion the girls down to the beach, Harry watched as the two ran towards him as if their very lives depended on reaching him as quickly as possible. Both were wearing matching one piece swim suits, with Gabrielle wearing white and the other girl wearing a powder blue.
Skidding to a stop and falling to her knees next to him, Gabrielle gave Harry a tight hug before greeting him. "Good morining 'Arry! Did you miss me? I brought my cousin Aimee with me today, I hope you don't mind. She and her sister are staying with us for the rest of the summer and I told them both you were the best big brother anyone could ever want! Can we go flying later?"
"Good morning to you as well, Gabrielle," Harry said with a smile. "It's a pleasure to meet you, Aimee, welcome to my home. I'm flattered by your praise, Gabrielle and of course we can go flying later."
"YAY!" shouted Gabrielle as her friend blushed slightly.
"It's an honor to meet you, Monsieur Potter," Aimee said with a smile, though the blush had yet to leave her face. "Gabrielle has told me a great deal about you since we arrived this morning. Not to mention what I've read about you in the papers. Thank you for defeating that man, Voldemort."
Harry smiled at the young girl, she was now one of the handful of people that had actually thanked him for what he had done. Sadly, none of the Weasley's were counted in that number, not even Ron. Still, Harry figured that his friends and family were just happy he was alive, so what did it matter if they thanked him. He wasn't out for praise anyway, so it was a moot point as far as he was concerned.
"It's just Harry, Aimee, and any friend of Gabrielle's is a friend of mine, so there is no need for thanks," Harry said with a smile, which had the small girl blushing even more. "Now, have you two had breakfast yet?"
"Yes!" they both answered in unison.
"Good, then shall we go for a swim?"
It took Aimee a little while to stop blushing any time Harry talked to her, but by the time lunch rolled around she was finally comfortable enough around him to relax. Pierre had explained to Harry the very first night after Gabrielle found him that young Veela children tended to be very shy around new people at first, especially men. It was a tightly controlled secret that there were no such things as partial Veela. Veela children were all full Veela, with the males being merely human and the girls always being Veela. Veela never admitted to this, but as Harry had saved the lives of both his daughters, Pierre thought Harry should at least be warned due to certain complications that could arise. It seemed that adult Veela, those over the age of fourteen, could control their allure, but Veela under the age of fourteen tended to have bursts of uncontrolled allure that could attract rather unsavory characters.
This was proved the following morning as Harry was shopping with Gabrielle and Apoline. While Apoline was helping Harry to pick out some new clothes, Gabrielle had been looking a swim suits just a few feet away. Suddenly Harry had felt a strange wave of emotion wash over him, not unlike the Imperious curse. He had of course ignored it, discretely drawing his wand and looking for the source. Much to his surprise he had turned to find Apoline running towards where Gabrielle was suddenly standing surrounded by several older men, much older men, who were looking at her with lust clearly visible in their eyes. Apoline managed to distract the men with her own allure while Harry scooped the terrified Gabrielle up in his arms and apparated her back to her home while the men were distracted. Depositing Gabrielle in the arms of her rather surprised father, Harry instantly Aparated back to Apoline's side and in the blink of an eye, she was gone as well. Pierre was still standing where Harry had left him, a crying Gabrielle in his arms, and his jaw currently hanging somewhere around knee level.
"'Arry," Apoline said once she had collected her wits from the surprise Apparition. "Are you alright?"
"Of course I am, why wouldn't I be?" replied Harry, slipping into English as he was slightly confused by Apoline's concern. "I'm more worried about you and Gabrielle. Those louts didn't hurt either of you, did they?"
His reply, from Gabrielle at least, was a flying tackle from the still crying blonde. "You saved me, 'Arry, and you aren't affected by me at all, are you?"
Now Harry was very confused. "Affected by what? You were in danger and I wanted to make sure you were safe, so I brought you home."
"Thank you, 'Arry," Apoline finally said with a smile.
This led to yet another explanation about Veela. As it turned out, what Harry had felt was Gabrielle's allure suddenly manifesting. The allure would usually last for about an hour, attracting any male in the area that wasn't blood related to the Veela, and was considered even harder to resist then an adult Veela's allure because the child could not control it. Normally there were warning signs that allowed the parent to keep the child out of harms way when the allure triggered, but today Gabrielle had shown none of the normal signs, leaving them unprepared for it. The fact that Harry seemed completely unaffected by it left Pierre and Apoline stunned, but also happy that Gabrielle would have someone other than them to look out for her when they were not around.
Pierre summed it up best, saying, "Veela live for contact with those they love, but as a child they are often stifled because of the dangers inherent in who we are. With you around, Gabrielle will have more freedom this summer than she had had before because we will not have to follow her everywhere she goes."
"Something I'm told, by both my daughters, that can be rather annoying at times," finished Apoline.
With Harry's permission, Apoline had unleashed the full power of her allure on him to see how strong his resistance was. Other than a slight blush, Harry had been able to ignore the effect. He told them about how the first time he saw a Veela, at the World Cup several years previously, he had been just as weak against it as any other male. Then he had met Fleur and been slightly enthralled, but by the Christmas break he had not even noticed it anymore. This led to Pierre's theory that his natural resistance to the Imperious combined with his exposure to Veela over an extended period, had led Harry to something of a natural defense against the allure.
"That or he's just too stubborn to allow anyone, no matter how beautiful, to control him," Pierre finally explained that night at dinner.
So, with Harry being immune to the allure, Gabrielle had suddenly been granted a new source of freedom. Now she spent her days with Harry at his home or out on the town, while her parents could enjoy some "free time" of their own. Harry suspected at this rate there might be a third Delacour child on its way by the end of summer, but that was not really any of his business. A quick lesson in the warning signs for an allure burst was of course needed before Harry could take Gabrielle off his property. The signs were fairly simple. A lack of appetite was the first sign, hence why he always asked Gabrielle if she had eaten that morning. Then there was the giggling caused by a sense of euphoria that came before a burst. Harry found that sign to be a complete waste as Gabrielle was constantly giggling, but it was at least good to know. The next sign was a little embarrassing for Harry, but was one of the best indicators of a impending burst of allure. Should the Veela child start rubbing her thighs and chest more than decency would allow, it was a good indication that something was about to happen. Apoline explained that the areas would start to tingle and a Veela would start rubbing at it, not even aware they were doing it. Gabrielle had done this four times this week alone, and each time Harry had been able to get her to a safe place before the burst happened.
The last sign of an impending burst was maybe the funniest, at least Harry thought it was. Pierre called it "The Walk" and that's exactly what it was. The walk was simply when all the signs kicked in at once and the poor child was rubbing, giggling, and trying to walk at the same time. It made for a funny sight and it generally meant that you had less than a minute before the burst would happen. Harry had only seen it once, two days after rescuing Gabrielle from the store. She had looked like a chicken strutting around the room before the burst hit, allowing her to calm down.
"Occasionally," Apoline told him that night, "there will be no signs at all, just like the other day. They are usually very weak bursts of the Allure, but more dangerous because they hit unexpectedly. Should she be with you when one of those happens, the best thing you can do is to bring her home immediately until it subsides."
There had not been another occurrence like the first time, a fact Harry was grateful for. Oddly, Aimee and Gabrielle had two minor bursts this morning, suddenly breaking into giggles both times before a weak burst that lasted barely an hour. Aimee had been a little frightened when Harry walked over to check on her, but Gabrielle quickly explained that Harry was immune. Oh yes, this caused even more blushing on Aimee's part, followed by a little crying, and then her declaration that Harry was in deed the best big brother ever. So, he now had two little sisters following him around like lost puppies. Well, it wasn't too hard to deal with, so he smiled and accepted it. While the girls cleaned up so they could go into town for lunch, Harry flooed Apoline, asking if she wanted to join as he knew Pierre was in Paris for the day.
"I would love to join, 'Arry," Apoline replied. "If you don't mind, Aimee's older sister will be joining us. I'm sure you've heard, but they will be staying with us for the remainder of the summer. I hope that will not be a problem?"
"Not at all, Apoline," Harry assured her. "Shall we meet here in say an hour?"
"Perfect, 'Arry," replied Apoline with a smile. "See you then."
Harry pulled his head from the flames before heading to his room for a quick shower and change of clothes. Gabrielle and Aimee would be fine by themselves for a little while. Apoline assured him that Gabrielle now had as many clothes at his house as she did at her own. This had happened after Harry gave Gabrielle her own room in his house. The small girl had immediately redecorated it to match her own personal style, there were more stuffed animals and pictures of horses than he could count, much to Harry's amusement. Of course that meant that over the course of the next few days she had basically moved in, only sleeping in her room at home if her parents made her. Harry didn't mind, seeing as how the house was a little big just for himself. Apoline and Pierre thought the whole situation a little funny, but reveled in the alone time it allowed them.
After a quick shower, Harry walked into his closet to pick out something to wear. For the life of him he could not remember the names of all the designers that had created the clothing Apoline and Gabrielle picked out for him, but Pierre assured him that was normal and that he should just smile and accept it. Needless to say, everything was custom tailored to fit him and left him looking much better than the baggy hand-me-downs that he had previously worn. Picking out a pair of black slacks, an emerald green polo shirt, black socks, and black loafers, Harry soon looked the very model of the aristocratic upper crust on vacation. He grabbed his favorite Citizen's wristwatch, a gift from Apoline, and his wallet before he walked out of his room to meet the girls.
Walking into the front parlor, Harry saw the girls sitting on one of the sofas waiting for him. They both wore simple white sundresses that hung to just below their knees with matching white sandals and white ribbons tying back their long blonde hair. If Harry didn't know better he would have thought they were sisters rather than just cousins, but damned if they weren't the cutest things he had ever seen. They immediately smiled at him, Aimee once again blushing slightly as he walked in.
"Ladies," he said with a smile as he held his hands out for them, "we'll be meeting Gabrielle's mother and Aimee's sister for lunch in a little bit, so I hope you are both hungry."
"Yes, Harry!" replied both girls, though Aimee seemed a little less enthusiastic about it.
"Are you not hungry, Aimee?" asked Harry as the girls walked over to take his hands.
Blushing once again, Aimee shook her head, saying, "Not really."
"Warning!" thought Harry before he kneeled down to look Aimee in the eyes. "If you think you are going to have a burst I don't want you to be afraid to tell me, okay?"
"It's not that, Harry," replied the bashful little girl. "It's just that my sister is coming and she can be a bit..."
"Overpowering," finished Gabrielle, causing Aimee to nod furiously.
"How so?" asked Harry, standing back up and leading the girls towards the front entryway. "Is she mean and horrible, or is she loud and rude? Isn't she nice to you?"
"Oh no!" objected Aimee almost instantly. "She's wonderful! The best big sister you could ever hope for, but..."
"She's absolutely perfect," Gabrielle supplied. "She is just so perfect it makes you want to gag. That's saying something coming from a Veela."
"Ahhh, I see," commented Harry. "Are we a little jealous, maybe?"
Both girls giggled for just a moment, though there was no burst to match it, before Aimee smiled up at him with a devious look in her eyes. "You'll see."
Just then the front door opened, Apoline had a standing invitation in, so there was no need for her to knock or ring the doorbell. She of course looked beautiful as always, making it obvious where Fleur and Gabrielle got their looks from. However, as she entered she was followed by another figure, a young woman. She was about a head shorter than Harry, though he thought she looked perfect the way she was. Her eyes were the first thing he noticed, being a sapphire blue that seemed to almost glow in the limited light of the entryway. Her hair, being darker than most Veela with its golden color highlighted by natural exposure to the sun, was long enough to reach down to just below her waist. And what a waist, no, what a body. Yes, it was perfect in every way visible, from her perfect legs that showed under her short sundress to the hint of cleavage seen at the scooped neckline.
"Wow," was all that Harry could say as he tried to pull his eyes away from the slightly blushing young woman.
"Told you!" sing-songed the two little girls holding his hands.
"Well, 'Arry, let me introduce my guest," Apoline said with a slight trace of a giggle. "This lovely young lady is my niece, Zoe Pauline Poisson. She will be staying with us for the rest of the summer. I hope you will be able to... Tolerate... Her being here?"
Noting the teasing quality of Apoline's voice, Harry pulled his attention off the young woman, saying, "Not at all, Apoline. I apologize for my reaction to meeting such a lovely young lady and hope this has not cast me in too vile a light?"
"Oh no," Zoe instantly replied, her cheeks tinged with just a trace of a blush. "Not at all, Monsieur Potter."
"Harry," he instantly corrected. "My friends all call my Harry."
"'Arry," she repeated, smiling at him as she noted the silly grin on his face from the way she said his name. "I hope we will be the best of friends then, 'Arry."
"I thought he was immune to the allure?" Aimee said in a stage whisper to Gabrielle.
Gabrielle nodded, replying back in the same stage whisper, "He is, but he's a boy, so he can be stupid without it sometimes."
"Gee, thanks," muttered Harry, with his own blush this time. "So nice to know you think so highly of me."
"Oh, I love you, 'Arry," she replied with a playful gleam in her eyes, "but that doesn't mean I won't tease you when you do something silly. Am I right?"
"But of course!" agreed the other ladies present, letting Harry know that this was going to be an interesting summer.