Disclaimer; The illustrious J. K. Rowling owns everything that resembles the people or places found in the Harry Potter books; everything else you can blame on me.
Unless of course I could blame someone else, Draco Malfoy would be good . . . but being as he would only be seven or eight in this time line, he would still be in diapers for the next two years, and as obnoxious as he is, it is hard to blame a rat faced little prig for anything if he is still in nappies.
Note 1 - I have recently read several stories by Radaslab; (Thirty Minutes that Changed Everything; Thirty Minutes II, and Not Normal.) These are Great stories and they use time compression, the tales are on this site and they, as well as his other stuff, like (Breakfast in New York), is well worth reading.
This story also uses the concept of time compression, I seem to remember the idea from a long time ago, (maybe it was even a Science Fiction book) so I am not sure that I have stolen the idea from him, but I do thank him for the good reading, and reminding me of the notion. As a footnote to this; I am over seventy years old and I have been reading Science Fiction and Fantasy for well over fifty years; I cannot remember what was popular Si Fi in university back then; however I do remember Tolkien, Isaac Asimov, A. E. Van Vogt and John Wyndham from around that time.
Once Upon a Time
Once Upon a Time, not really that long ago, in a small town not very far from the big city; in quite a small unnaturally clean house there lived a rather nice young boy. Because of the aggrandising, self-promulgating, myopic and evil machinations of a wicked wizard he had been stolen from his rightful heritage and sentenced to be persecuted by a walrus, a juvenile hippopotamus, and a giraffe.
One day in early summer . . .
And now the Story Begins . . .
There was a kind of explosive crack and Harry Potter disappeared.
Scant seconds later there were three much softer cracks as three people appeared in the totally wrecked room; two were Aurors . . . the third was the Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement Mme Amelia Bones. As luck would have it the three had been talking to Mafalda Hopkirk, in the Underage Use of Magic Office; this in itself was a very unusual occurrence.
For her part Mafalda was looking resigned, she had a standing instruction from Lord High and Mighty, Whiskers Dumbledore, as was usual with the bearded poof, it was only verbal. It was that he was to be informed of magic from this location before she did anything else; he normally took care of it. Well she hadn't done anything else, and Amelia Bones was her ultimate boss and Mafalda liked her job, so . . . she would leave it a couple of minutes and just wouldn't tell him about Amelia. After all it wasn't even her office which had sent Amelia with two aurors to number four Privet Drive; it was the head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement who was entirely responsible for that decision.
In the dining half of the kitchen dining room, two chronically obese males were lying; embedded in broken furnishings; very obviously unconscious . . . the younger one was so fat that it was almost impossible to assess his age; the other looked to be about forty.
Checking quickly Mme Bones said, "Their injuries are serious but not life threatening, so no healing, no repairing, look around for residual magic and take note of anything else that seems out of place or unusual."
There was also a third, unnaturally thin female, who was sitting on the floor; she was leaning against the wall at the end of the short hall . . . she was semiconscious and moaning piteously.
Amelia checked her quickly and finding no serious injuries revived her and gave her a glass of water with one drop of veritaserum in it; then she asked, "What happened?"
"The boy . . ."
"The Potter boy, he . . ."
Exasperated Petunia snapped, "Yes Harry Potter; he let the wind bang the back door when he was putting the third lot of rubbish out and it made Vernon and Dudley spill some of the coffee they were having after their breakfast. So as normal, they started to hit him . . . then suddenly everything seemed to explode and he disappeared . . . and you came . . . usually that awful Dumbledore fellow comes with the other really slimy, greasy haired Snape, when something like this happens."
Amelia continued questioning Harry's aunt . . . she didn't like what she was hearing.
At the mention of Dumbledore's name one of the aurors started keeping a discrete watch out of the front window and three minutes later she told the others that the chief warlock and Snape were coming up Privet Drive. Meanwhile, the second auror had been checking through what was left of the room . . . including the cupboard under the stairs; needless to say she was not the least amused.
None of the three were happy with what they had found out in number four Privet Drive.
It was a given that Amelia and her assistants had already decided that it would probably be for the best if the interfering old goat didn't find them here; so the three did a dispersion jump, before returning to the Department of Magical Law Enforcement. The Headmaster was a very powerful wizard and a dispersion jump split them up; leaving at the same time, (one to Hogsmeade, one to Diagon Alley and one to St Mungo's;) before going to the DMLE made them almost impossible to follow.
It was a bright sunny Saturday morning in mid Devon and three very pretty young girls were sitting in a meadow which was liberally sprinkled with buttercups, clover and daisies.
Ginny was seven, it had been her birthday a few days before on the 21st of June; Luna was also seven and Hermione was eight; the three young witches were having a picnic by way of celebration.
Luna and Ginny had met Hermione about a year and a half ago when she had done some accidental magic saving Ginny who was crossing a road in front of a speeding car. Whilst thanking her Ginny asked her if she was a witch as well, the pair were only five years old and they had no real conception of the Ministry let alone its statute of secrecy; Hermione had been confused so the pair took her and her mother to meet Luna's mother. From this their friendship had blossomed and Hermione had spent time each day teaching the other two what she had learned in her muggle primary school.
Unexpectedly there was a loud crack and a scruffy, malnourished, small boy arrived on the ground at the fourth side of the tablecloth the three girls had spread out for their picnic. All three of them knew that they were young witches, so whilst they were surprised at the boy's arrival, they were not totally shocked and Luna, the blond, said, "He must be a wizard . . . although he is very young to be apparating."
Hermione, the girl with bushy brown hair, was sometimes a bit bossy, however she was very kind hearted and she moved over to have a closer look at their unexpected visitor. With a hitch in her voice she said, "He seems to be unconscious and it looks like someone has been beating him . . . quite badly; maybe it was accidental magic."
As she dashed off up the hill towards her home, Luna called out, "My mum used to work at St Mungo's hospital; I'll go and get her."
Dumbledore had a problem.
Well he was a pure-blooded, bigoted, egotistical, self-serving, interfering old busybody who accepted advice from no one, he kept unwarranted secrets and he kept poking his nose into places it did not belong. Consequently, much like others of his ilk, he had acquired a fair few problems that rightfully belonged to other people. However that was a different problem and like most of his problems, it was all of his own making. He was also quite clever, and no doubt he was cleverer than all of the people around him; but in the land of the blind the one eyed man was king; and he was nothing like as clever as he thought he was.
Nonetheless his current near calamity was that he had lost Harry Potter; whatever the young lad had done here appeared to be terminal; the child had destroyed both the protection wards which he had placed on this house and the illegal tracking charms he had put on the boy. At this moment in time he had no idea how he could possibly find Harry Potter; if he went to the DMLE for help they were very likely to find out that he had all but kidnapped the boy from Godric's Hollow and put him into an environment expressly prohibited by both of his parents Will's.
Because he was somewhat in a quandary as to what to do about the Potter boy, he decided to have a look at the apparently rather battered Dursleys.
He now had acquired another pair of problems, although these he considered rather minor.
Both of the Dursley males had multiple broken and shattered bones which required expert medical attention to reset, the degree of which was well beyond his or his accomplices healing capabilities. However the last time he had called Mme Pomfrey to Privet Drive she had threatened him with dire consequences if he called her here again. She ensured that he understood that she did not approve of the diabolical conditions these morons kept that poor lad in.
Petunia was recovering, so if he removed the families knowledge of magic and then repaired all of the damage inside the house the Dursley woman could call the muggle medical people for her husband and son . . . with a bit of luck they would eventually be alright. As far as he was concerned the Dursleys had served his their purpose and had now become of no importance to him; he would leave them to get on with their lives as best they could, after all, they were only muggles. As it happened the male Dursleys would be crippled for the rest of their lives.
I forgot to tell you earlier that he was also quite callous.
Although what he was going to do with Harry Potter, if and when he found him, portended another, rather major problem looming on the horizon.
She was sat thinking at the desk in her office; Amelia Bones had arrived back from Privet Drive somewhat confused; she was well aware that the Potters were an extremely wealthy Most Ancient and Most Noble family. Ergo she had been surprised to find that Harry Potter, the only Scion of House Potter, had apparently, been living in that hovel in Little Whinging . . . being inquisitive was a part of her job, so she went to the DMLE records department and took out their 'House Potter' file.
The Department of Magical Law Enforcement records were totally independent of the Wizengamot and other Ministry records. Very few people knew that they even existed . . . and even fewer had access to them.
Amongst a lot of other information, the file contained unsealed, certified magical copies of the Potters 'Wills'. The magical copies of 'Wills' were self-updating and these 'Wills' had never been read. In his arrogance Dumbledore had ordered the Wizengamot's copy of the Potters 'Wills' to be sealed . . . this order, could not affect the copies held in the DMLE records nor, come to that, those in Gringotts Bank.
From her initial quick scan of the two 'Wills' they were explosive, ten families were listed as approved to care for the scion of the Potter family; the Dursleys and Dumbledore were explicitly excluded. It was fairly obvious that Dumbledore was trying to commit line theft; Dumbledore had totally ignored the wishes of the head of an Ancient and Noble family and used his positions and influence to cover up his kidnaping of the scion of House Potter.
Next there was Sirius Black; he was Harry Potter's magical godfather, being the boy's magical godfather the magic wouldn't allow him to do anything that might hurt the boy, on penalty of his life or his 'magic'. The Wills were both quite clear that the Earl of Blackmore was not the Potters secret keeper; it was Peter Pettigrew who had been the Potters secret keeper . . . she would need to read the Sirius Black file, he was very likely innocent.
Some people were going to be in serious trouble.
Harry Potter should never have been anywhere near Surrey let alone Little Whinging; there was a list of ten families who were to be contacted with regard to the possibility of his needing to be looked after and her name was on the list. The final option, the eleventh, was an orphanage run by the 'Potter Trust'; the names of Dumbledore and the Dursleys were top of the list specified as being totally unsuitable for Harry's upbringing.
Now she was livid.
She had decided that when she found him, as soon as possible she would take Harry Potter along to Gringotts together with a copy of the Potters Wills; there was a very interesting option in both his mother's and his father's Will's for their son's pre magic school education. Even that long ago, neither of his parents had been particularly enamoured with Dumbledore, and if he was still at Hogwarts when it was time for Harry to go to magic school his parents were both recommending that he should go abroad for his magical education.
As she was pondering all of this she received a flustered floo call from her friend Mia Lovegood in Devon . . . apparently Harry Potter was unconscious in the Rookery . . . the Lovegood home.
She left for Devon immediately with her two trusty aurors; one of the aurors was bringing a field medical kit; when they arrived, the auror, whose name was Katy, went upstairs with Mia Lovegood, Luna's mother; she was going to examine Harry Potter.
The three little girls were sat cuddling on a sofa, so Amelia and the other auror, who was called Cleo, sat on another sofa opposite them and Amelia started chatting to them, after a couple of minutes she asked, "Can you tell us what happened?"
The three whispered to each other for a couple of seconds and then Hermione answered, "We were out in the meadow and had just sat down because our picnic was ready and there was a crack, it was quite loud, and . . . and he, the scruffy boy, just arrived at the empty side of the tablecloth. Luna said that he must be a wizard, because he appeared to have apparated, although, as she also said, he was way too young to be doing that. He hadn't moved much so I went and had a closer look at him and I said that he seemed to be unconscious and it looked as though someone had been beating him . . . quite badly." She had tears in her eyes.
Relatively brightly Luna added, "That's just what happened, apart from me running off to get my mum; do you want us to show you where we were having our picnic? It's still all out there . . . but I don't really feel like eating it now."
Amelia thought that it would be a good Idea so the five of them headed out across the meadow.
There really was not a lot to see and when all three of the little girls decided that they didn't feel like a picnic anymore, Cleo, the other auror, helped them pack everything away and carry it back to the house.
On their way across the meadow, Cleo whispered, "Higher Magic?" to her boss.
The Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement didn't comment, she just shrugged her shoulders whilst looking thoughtful.
As the three children and two from the Department of Magical Law Enforcement arrived back in the house, they were informed that Harry had woken up . . . however he appeared to be very nervous of adults.
As the girls were making their way up the stairs, softly Hermione said, "If he really is nervous then we should try to be a bit quiet."
Walking up to the bed Luna said, "Hello, my name is Luna, and I live here."
With a big smile, Ginny continued, "My name is Ginny and I live about two miles in that direction." She was waving her hand around quite vaguely; in fact she was waving in virtually the opposite direction to the one in which she lived, and it was nowhere near two miles.
"Hello." Hermione said, "I live about three-quarters of a mile away, toward the village . . . what's your name?"
"Hi, my name is Harry;" he said quietly, "and you shouldn't talk to me because my uncle says that I am a freak and Dudley and his gang beats up everybody who tries to be friends with me."
Amelia had followed the girls up the stairs, she was listening from the doorway, and she said, "You don't need to worry about Dudley Harry; he is a long, long way away."
Hermione took his hand, she was nearly in tears when she asked, "Was someone hitting you Harry?"
He started telling his story and it went back as far as he could remember and he was soon in tears himself; the other two girls started holding his hands and comforting him. This gave him the will to tell his whole story of slavery, being locked in the cupboard under the stairs, ritual abuse, lack of food, lack of medical treatment for broken bones etc.
All seven females were in tears . . . there was only one crime for which the 'magical world' would prosecute a non-magical person, and that was the deliberate mistreatment of a known magical child. The Dursleys were likely to be setting some records for muggle families residing in Azkaban . . . hopefully, Snape and Dumbledore would be with them.
The three girls sat with him and started telling him about him being a wizard and them being 'really truly' witches . . .
Back in her office, amazingly, it was still only ten o'clock; Amelia Bones had a few minutes to think.
Firstly; the word about Dumbledore was out in her department. She couldn't think of any way the Lord of the very dark grey would be able to convince Magical Law Enforcement to mount a search for Harry Potter without revealing his complicity in at least half a dozen serious offences, and she already knew what most of them were.
Worryingly however, from his previous actions she was quite certain that the interfering Headmaster would put the word out to his cronies that he was looking for Harry Potter. In this context Molly Weasley was possibly a large problem; in some things she had a heart of gold, however she was a very opinionated woman and she thought that the whiskered old fool could do no wrong. Her daughter knew where Harry Potter was and any hint of him being at the Rookery and the information would be back to the scheming Headmaster immediately.
The second thing . . . was it Higher Magic? The three young girls; two would be classed as pure blood's and the other one was a muggleborn; absolutely no problem as far as Higher Magic or she was concerned; blood purists could rant all they wanted it wouldn't change fundamental facts. She had used the youngest ones infatuation with 'the boy who lived' as a buffer to protect Harry Potter from the meddlesome headmaster. Even Ginny knew that her mother, Molly Weasley, was a rabid Dumbledore supporter; convincing Ginny that if her family found out where Harry was she would more than likely not see him again for years; this virtually guaranteed the young girl would keep her mouth closed.
Sailing very close to the wind, the third thing she had done was to send two aurors to Azkaban to bring Sirius Black to the Department of Magical Law Enforcement pending his trial; she had read Black's file and it was almost nonsense. She had used his prisoner number as opposed to his name; hopefully this would keep her actions under the radar and out of the 'Daily Prophet' headlines until it was too late for certain hirsute individuals to interfere with what she was doing.
Lastly . . . she had to move her butt before she was late for her appointment with the head of Potter accounts in Gringotts Bank.
Amelia arrived at the bank with a copy of the complete Department of Magical Law Enforcement Potter file, both of the Potters 'Wills' and a copy of the Sirius Black file.
She was in time to keep her appointment with the head of Potter accounts.
An hour later she left Gringotts armed with enough Gringotts supplied information to sink both Dumbledore and Snape without trace; Monday morning's Wizengamot session would be a doozy. She also had a request from Ragnok that she should bring Lord Potter to the bank as soon as possible, he could bring whoever he wanted with him, and she had been given a Goblin portkey to facilitate this; she had promised to try to do this before lunch.
Ragnok was sat at his desk, trying to remember when he last had so many people in his office.
When Amelia Bones had arrived back at the Rookery she had been introduced to Emma Granger, who besides being a dentist, was Hermione's mother; without hesitation she had accompanied Mia and the four children back to the bank. These had joined the four goblin guards; the Potter account manager with his assistant and a trainee; two medical people and himself . . . it made quite a few.
Ringmail, the Potter accounts manager, asked the seven humans to sit on chairs in front of Ragnok's desk. Harry sat between Hermione and Ginny; Luna was between her and Mia, her mum; at the other end Emma was between Hermione and Mme Bones.
It hadn't taken long to arrange and the goblin leader was able to get the meeting started.
"By fortuitous happenstance Ringmail, the Potter accounts manager, was in a meeting with me, reference the aforementioned accounts, when he received an urgent request for an appointment from Mme Bones. The Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement requesting a meeting with the Account Manager for the accounts of an Ancient and Noble House; is a very unusual occurrence. We were already discussing anomalies pertaining to the Potter accounts; ergo we were happy to invite Mme Bones to join us in the hope that she could throw some light on the situation.
"We spent some time reviewing all of the information available and have reached some not very pleasant conclusions. This has resulted in our issuing an order for the arrest of Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore and Severus Oscar Snape, as soon as they enter any goblin owned establishment. If we followed the laid down Ministry procedure, we should send a request asking them to hand the felons over to us; they would simply refuse and then the pair would be warned that the Goblins were going to arrest them. However if we issue a request for their extradition as they enter one of our properties, and an hour later, when we have them safely locked away, we will send a cancellation telling the Ministry that we already have them.
"I wish to assure all of you that we do not normally behave in this manner; however, attempting to deal with high ranking, powerful members of your government is a bit like having teeth pulled without a numbing potion . . . extremely unpleasant."
Emma Granger burst out laughing and apologising Mia Lovegood explained to the confused looking goblins that Emma was a muggle dentist and she found Ragnok's verbal expression very amusing; Emma then had to explain to most of those present what a dentist actually did.
Ragnok hadn't taken offence, and he seemed somewhat amused as he continued, "Because of the environment Mme Bones has described as Lord Potter's previous abode, I have brought in two world class healers and I suggest that we start by giving young Harry a thorough examination."
Harry looked questioningly at Hermione and she said, "I think that it is a very good idea Harry especially the way you said that those dreadful people treated you . . . I'm sure my mum will go with you, if you like."
Emma smiled at him as she took his hand and they followed the two healers into a small adjoining room.
As the door closed Ragnok said, "The magic for that room was invented by Harry's mother, it compresses time; the room is currently set for one thousand to one time compression; they will not be very long, if they activate it for one minute, in there the time experienced would be over sixteen hours."
The door had reopened as the goblin had finished speaking.
Clarice, the human one of the healers was chatting to Emma, and she explained that the room could be set up as almost anything you wanted; but that was only half of it. It could also run time compression, and it was currently set for one thousand to one; this meant that when activated ten seconds outside would be over two and a half hours in here. The major drawback was that once activated it had to be allowed to complete its cycle, set it for one hour external time and you would be in here over forty days and you better be sure that you had enough food and water with you; the healer turned back to her patient.
Emma was intrigued because only the healer who had been talking to her was human; the other was a goblin, her name turned out to be Rikki, her real goblin name was actually something totally unpronounceable, so she allowed humans to call her Rikki. Both of the healers used totally different methods of ascertaining Harry's physical status; and neither looked particularly happy with what they were finding.
The healers were talking to each other in gobbledegook they did however give an occasional synopsis in English, for Emma; the current injuries and the badly healed list included broken arms, legs, fingers, ribs and his skull . . . in two places. A loud blast of what must have been swearing erupted when they found that his magic had been bound . . . twice. One of the bindings he had blown apart a few hours earlier, and the other, that was still restricting at least half of his magic, had been severely strained at the same time; of course this was removed.
There were only muttered curses as they removed multiple memory modifications . . . Emma was warned that it could possibly take several days for all of his memories to sort themselves out and settle down.
It created problems for unscrupulous human magic users when Goblin or goblin trained healers dealt with the results of their nefarious machinations. It was normal practice for the Goblins to identify the caster of each of the spells used on Harry . . . it was totally Dumbledore and Snape who were the guilty parties.
Harry was brought out of the time compression room on a hovering stretcher, his eyes were open but slightly glazed and Emma was holding his hand, also he had been told by the goblin healer, to try not to move too much. This would give all of the physical healing time to settle and set properly.
The healers made their report to the occupants of the room and there was silence apart from the crying of the three girls.
Ragnok appeared to be livid, however he was the leader of the Goblin nation, so calling on all of his vast experience he pulled himself together and said, "The misbegotten pair of deviants will spend the next fifty years in our nickel mines, if they survive that they can spend the next fifty shovelling dragon fertiliser in the lowest levels; if they complete that stint I am sure we can think of something else to entertain them."
Amelia asked, "Why do you want to send them to the nickel mines first?" Her information placed the dragon pens three steps below Azkaban on the ladder of places you would wish to visit on your summer vacation.
Ragnok laughed, "Nickel ore shields and absorbs magic; if they are lucky they will still be squibs by the time they leave the mines, and whilst they are there they cannot be found . . . magically."
The goblin leader appeared to have settled a little, and continued, "Mr Potter, it is important that you are hidden, there are still a lot of people who, for various reasons, would like to get their hands on you; their reasons vary from wanting you to marry their daughter's to killing you. The first you are not ready to cope with yet; the latter is probably better put off for as long as possible.
"The healers have told us that you need to rest; there is a contingency in your parents Wills that would serve your requirements; do you feel up to listening to it?"
Harry nodded his agreement and his stretcher was rotated and tilted so that he could see Ragnok; Hermione and Ginny were each holding one of his hands.
As this was happening, the goblin healer interrupted, "His head is functioning but the background thoughts are currently quite chaotic. If you describe what you currently believe to be his best option, he could maybe take a copy of the wills and go there for a week, by which time, I am sure he will be feeling much better. Also he will need someone to take care of him, and people, of his own age, to keep him company; also he will need to return here in the next few days."
Ragnok was reading through some papers as he asked the healers, "How soon will Lord Potter be allowed to walk?"
After the pair scanned Harry again the goblin healer said, "He will need no more than another five minutes."
"Thank you." Ragnok said, he continued, "I have been reading through the specification of this house and quite honestly I have no idea what most of it means. Your mother was a brilliant muggle born witch and this house was built using a combination of magical and mundane systems and . . . Well quite frankly it is beyond me; a lot of these things your mother invented and she is deliberately vague with some of her descriptions . . . they are probably worth a lot of money.
"Right let me tell you what I can understand.
"The estate is somewhere in the tropics and it is always warm, but sometimes wet; bear in mind that the tropics go all around the circumference of the world. Singapore, Sothern India, Northern and central Africa, the Caribbean, central and Southern America . . . trying to guess precisely where at this time is somewhat pointless.
"It is known that the house sits in more than twenty five hundred acres of woodland, meadows and gardens; it has some thirty bedroom suites. It overlooks a private sheltered bay with four hundred metres of white sand beach complete with boathouse and jetty.
"There are rune driven wards which besides keeping unfriendly people out, exclude dangerous spiders, most biting insects including mosquitoes, snakes and dangerous fish. It has a library of some three hundred thousand volumes, over sixty thousand of which are on magical subjects; that makes it about three times the size of the total Hogwarts Library which is supposed to be the largest in the European magical world.
"At least two hundred free elves look after Y Crochendy . . ."
Emma burst out laughing again and Mia asked, "What is so funny?"
When Hermione's mum pulled herself together, she said, "I'm sorry about that, but Y Crochendy is Welsh for The Pottery and the last time I was home . . . Wales wasn't in the tropics." She was giggling again; her name before she married was Emma Jane Jenkins.
Amelia also seemed to be amused, "So, even if someone went to the trouble of finding out the name of the estate; first off it wouldn't be easy for them to find the translation of the name; and then, if and when they did get it translated the language would give them no idea as to which country the house is in."
Ragnok was smiling, "I think that it would be a good idea if at least some of us went to have a look at 'The Pottery', we might have more idea of what we are talking about?"
There was general agreement around the room, but then the discussion started as to just who would be going; the girls ignored the silly adult debate and each of them took a firm grip of Harry, it appeared that they had adopted him. He didn't mind them being that way but he was still confused about his being a wizard; he had been fed and people were looking after him . . . life was a hundred times better, so he would just go with the flow.
Local time it appeared to be early evening when they arrived at The Pottery, and eventually, apart from some of the Goblin guards, everybody had come to see Harry's, and if they had anything to do with it the three girls, new home. Gorgeous didn't begin to describe the whole place; even the goblins seemed to be impressed and they generally lived underground.
The furnishings all appeared to be high quality, comfortable, modern, muggle; Amelia wondered just what the Dowager Augusta Longbottom would make of them; she would likely be horrified.
Some elves had greeted them and after ascertaining who each of them was; one asked Harry if they would care to have dinner because it was approaching that time here. As soon as the elves had confirmed that they could cater for the goblins, it only took seconds for all of them to decide that they were getting rather hungry.
Very shortly after they had finished eating it became really obvious that Harry was wilting, he had had a very long, stressful day. What with the confrontation with his aunt, cousin and uncle early this morning, apparating over a hundred miles and four hours of compressed time it wasn't all that surprising.
An elf led him up the stairs and into the master bedroom; the bed was enormous but Harry was too tired to properly notice; the elf transfigured his clothes into pyjamas as he crawled to the centre of the bed and collapsed into sleep. His nightmares started almost immediately and not knowing what else to do, both Luna and Hermione climbed onto his bed and started to cuddle him, it was what their mum's did when they were having bad dreams. It worked . . . almost instantaneously; he started cuddling Luna who had backed into him whilst Hermione was behind him with her arms around him. Ginny was the smallest, so she took it upon herself to become his surrogate pillow; in less than a minute the three girls were asleep as well.
Both of the mothers had kissed all four of the children goodnight before following the rest of the adults who had trailed behind the children up to Harry's bedroom.
As she was entering a kind of lounge Emma spoke to an elf, the elf told her that her name was Tilly and then, having been asked, she showed her to where the telephone was located. Emma asked Tilly what she had to do to speak to her husband who was in England and the little elf explained to her that the telephone thought that it was in England, so she should just pretend that she was somewhere in England as well. Feeling only slightly confused Emma dialled her husband, she included the area code, he picked the phone up on the second ring, Emma outlined what had been happening, and she told him to expect her when he saw her and it could possibly be the next day. As she was walking back to the others she made a bet with herself that Dan, her husband, was already on the phone having a pizza delivered; she would have won her bet.
The account managers and the goblin guards had returned to the bank, and the others had just settled when Emma re-joined them; so Ragnok set the ball rolling, "This property is suggested in both of the Potters Wills, as being ideal for a preschool for magical children; they also suggests that any number between four and ten would likely work well."
Amelia said, "Harry is a given and it seems that we have already acquired another three, also I am certain that my niece Susan and her best friend Hannah would love to come here; however short term we have a slight problem with Ginny Weasley.
"Currently we could be accused of having kidnapped the girl, I very much doubt that the girl in question would see it that way, but her mother, Molly Weasley, might well, and she is about as staunch a Dumbledore supporter as you will find . . . anywhere."
"If we were to tell Mrs Weasley," Ragnok was smiling, "that Harry Potter and three girls, including her daughter, had been seen going into Gringotts . . . what do you think would happen?"
Mia opined, "Well Molly would tell Dumbledore, and he would collect Snape, then the pair of them would go, charging off to the Bank . . . and . . . and never be seen again.
"I think that it should be Amelia and I who go to ask Molly about Ginny staying here for school, she might well ask about teachers and such like. Knowing her she will want to come here and see for herself what it is like, and if she asks about Harry it would be better if Amelia answered her."
Not knowing the magical world, Emma asked, "How about other children; I believe that Ginny has brothers?"
Mia grimaced, "Ginny's brothers; the twins are a pair of almost uncontrollable hooligans and being as they are two years older than the others, they should be ruled out. Ronald is the same age group as the others, but he is very immature and is still at the 'all girls are icky' stage and I don't think he can read properly. Apart from that he is quite often very rude, so he and Luna can't stand each other, so all things considered, he is probably out as well; the other three brothers are older and are already at Hogwarts.
"Can we think of anyone else?"
Clearing his throat Ragnok said, "Our provisional list is quite short, it comprises Padma and Parvati Patil, they are of Indian extraction, their father is an unspeakable and their mother has masteries in Runes and Arithmancy. Neville Longbottom, the scion of House Longbottom, Amelia can probably tell you more about him than I can. Lastly Daphne Greengrass, her father is a magical solicitor and a member of the Wizengamot, her mother has a masters in History, and she also has a muggle degree in Political Science.
Although she didn't say it, Neville Longbottom's grandmother thought (quite erroneously) that he was a squib, and she wouldn't allow him to join them.
"That possibly gives us four more children and two teachers; there is a provision in the will for all of the teachers to be paid . . . very generously; there is a substantial provision in the 'Trust Fund', for this to happen. The goblins will provide medical cover as required also there is a suggestion that Remus Lupin and Sirius Black be included as instructors and friends. Seemingly Remus has several masteries and could easily teach Charms, Transfiguration and Defence to well beyond NEWT level. Sirius Black was an auror, also apparently he was always better than Snape at Potions, and he was an infinitely better teacher; out of interest, Lilly Evans, Harry's mother was the best at potions, in their year."
Amelia wasn't happy for a minute, "There is only one reason I can think of why Dumbledore has Snape anywhere near children, and even the thought of that makes me want to vomit; the sooner he is locked away the better.
"I have arranged for Sirius Black to be given a hearing before the Wizengamot on Monday; I will get him freed and here the same day or Tuesday at the latest; Remus Lupin is currently working for me on night patrols in Diagon Alley, he will also soon be here.
"There seems to be a shortage of males on our list, but the only way I can think of finding some more around the correct age, would be to ask Professor McGonagall, and at the moment, that is a definite no, no.
"We all seem to have things to do; Emma, the elves will look after everything here, but if you and your husband could cover the children for the weekend things might work a bit better.
"Mia and I have to go and see the Weasleys about Ginny; I also have to see the Patils, the Greengrass parents, the Abbotts, that shouldn't be too much trouble and then the Longbottom matriarch . . . oh such joy."
"Right," Ragnok said, "travelling between here and your homes in England. You will each be given a token which will allow you to travel to a secure floo inside the bank; the room only contains the portal to travel between here and there. The fireplace in the room will allow you to travel to your homes, for Emma we have opened a Gringotts Floo connection to the library in her house, I know that the ministry will not provide one for her because she is a muggle. I suggest that you take at least one of these ladies to your home with you and they can teach you how to use the system; you could bring your husband here for the weekend, if he isn't too busy.
"Don't forget that the wards here are rather unforgiving, and they will exclude anybody who intends harm to any of the residents; if the harm was targeted at Harry the exclusion would apparently be violent. I have heard reports of Mrs Weasley behaving in a manner that the wards here would not appreciate; for instance, if she tried to drag Ginevra away against her will she would find herself, unceremoniously transported back to Gringotts."
Harry had drifted into consciousness and tried to roll onto his back, he failed in his attempt but his action resulted in disturbing the slumber of the three girls who were surrounding him.
"What are we all doing here?" mumbled Hermione.
"I have absolutely no idea," Harry said, "although yesterday was possibly the weirdest day of my life, but it was very nice in its own twisted way."
In a horrified tone Ginny said, "I'm dead . . . if I go home and tell my mum that I spent the night in bed with Harry Potter and two other girls I will be painted as the mostest scarletest woman ever in the history of ever and longer if she has her way. She will probably kill me just for not going home last night."
Calmly Luna said, "I seem to remember that my mum was here last night so someone will certainly have gone to your house yesterday evening and told your mum and dad what's going on, I hope that someone comes and tells me soon as well, because I have absolutely no idea . . . anyway, where are we?"
All four of them sat up on the bed and stared out of the huge windows, they were facing out over a bay and the sea . . . the view was breath taking.
Holding hands after they had all clambered off of the bed and then went over to stare out of the window; minor variations on the theme of "Wow!" was the only thing said for the next five minutes.
A soft pop disturbed the on-going intellectual conversation, "Good morning master Harry and friends, my name is Penny . . . would you all like to come for some breakfast? It doesn't matter for today that you are all still in your pyjamas."
As they were Following Penny they were wondering where the pyjamas had come from; whilst making their way to a very nice, casual dining room, Penny informed them that it was called the breakfast room.
With foreboding in her tone, Ginny asked, "Um, just how many dining rooms are there?"
"There is the family dining room which is where you were last evening, it is a bit more formal than this, it will seat about a dozen over; and there is the formal dining room, which will seat thirty or forty over; and of course this room which can also seat about twenty or so. As the weather here is generally very nice the family sometimes eats in the conservatory or outside on the veranda, so you could be spoiled for choice. Oh I nearly forgot, there is also the banqueting hall, it will seat over a hundred."
Ginny was in a bit of a daze, however the food had arrived and all four of them were filling their plate's . . . the food was wonderful.
As they sat down Luna said, "One thing we don't have to worry about is how big or nice this place is, as long as we can live here comfortably that is all that matters." Luna had previously noticed Ginny's reaction to perceived wealth, Hermione's parents' house was very nice as well; even in the wizarding world Luna's home was considered weird. The young blond suspected that Ginny's reaction was something from her mother, what she had seen of the boys they were much the same; her father however didn't seem to care.
After the four of them had eaten they set out to start explore the house, they had spent about an hour wandering around before they were intercepted by Penny, who it seemed had been keeping an eye on them, "You should all go and have a shower, and then get dressed before other people come, then you can carry on exploring; I have put clothes in each of your room's, I will show you."
Going back up the stairs the three girls were muttering to each other about not having brought any clothes with them, whilst Harry assured the three of them that he didn't have any clothes to bring anyway.
Penny explained to them, "We know that none of you brought clothes with you so we made you some . . . and the underwear we bought because homemade underwear is usually not very comfortable."
Luna was pouting, "I don't mind having a shower but I would sooner not wear any clothes . . . after all, it is quite warm here."
Both of the girls were well aware of Luna's clothing preferences, but looking glum Ginny mumbled, "If she can manage it I expect that my mum will try to come here sometime today, and if she was to find us all with no clothes on . . . well you both know what she is like."
When they reached the top of the first flight of stairs the three girls ignored the direction the elf was trying to lead them and followed Harry into his room, whereupon all four of them started looking around properly.
"Wow, Look what I have found." The other three followed Luna's voice into the room she had been looking in; it was an enormous bathroom and she was stood in the middle of a huge, glass fronted, shower which had a huge window, overlooking the bay, at the rear; it was at least ten maybe twelve foot square. The others joined her and they all started looking around, they were chatting to each other and trying to work out how it worked.
"What does this do? . . . Aieeeee!" . . . Ginny had turned the handle she had been looking at; her shriek was joined by both Hermione's and Luna's, and she continued, "Well at least the water isn't freezing."
"We're already soaking; we might as well have a shower here." Luna said this as she was already pealing out of her clothes.
"But . . ." Harry was very articulate.
"We might just as well; although we will have to get dressed before the adults come." Hermione was taking off her wet things and Ginny didn't need very much encouragement to do the same.
Looking somewhat resigned Harry removed his wet pyjamas and joined in with the three girls, washing each other; however they did each wash their own naughty bits.
Eventually Ginny did the honours and turned the water off; she was immediately popped away by an elf, she was rapidly followed by Hermione, and Luna's "Oh poo," died in the distance as she disappeared as well.
An elf led him out of the shower, she identified herself as Miffi, and whilst she was drying him she explained that his father had named her that because he said that she was always miffed with him because when he got into trouble she always caught him.
Harry was only wearing blue jeans and a white T-shirt, but when he saw himself in a mirror he thought that he looked like a normal boy; his clothes and trainers were better than he was used to. They fit him, and he had new spectacles that weren't scratched and falling apart; his vision was improved considerably.
Harry left his room at the same time as Hermione left hers and they had only just greeted each other when they were joined by the other two; all four were in jeans and T-shirt's. As was fitting the ones that the girls were wearing were a lot more colourful than those Harry had on.
As they turned towards the stairs a voice came from slightly above them, "Good morning you lot, and did you all sleep well?" Coming down the stairs from the second floor were Hermione's parents.
There was a chorus of good mornings and yes we did, but rolling her eyes Hermione asked, "Is it still morning? We have been up for hours and none of us has a watch so we don't know what the time is."
Harry had just been introduced to Dan, Hermione's Dad, when Miffi, Harry's elf, appeared holding a tray with at least a couple of dozen watches on it; she encouraged each of the children to take one which they did.
The children were giggling whilst they were picking themselves watches; so quietly Dan said to Emma, "I know that you told me that he had a lot of money but most of those watches are over a thousand pounds each."
Smirking whilst she was admiring her new watch Hermione said, "You are very lucky . . . it is only quarter to twelve so I suppose that good morning was just about right and I guess that brunch is in order."
Harry wasn't yet up for any more formality, so he asked, "Miffi, can we eat in the breakfast room again?" Having agreed Miffi popped away.
It was probably over three hours since they had eaten so the four of them decided that they could have a reckoning with some more food, after all the food was very nice and it would be a pity to let it go to waste.
The six had been eating and talking for about a quarter of an hour when there was a commotion from the direction of the Portal and people were following one of the elves into the breakfast room.
The occupants of the breakfast room all stood and tentatively Harry said, "Good morning."
There were five girls who none of them knew; Clarice, the healer from Gringotts, Amelia Bones and Mia Lovegood, he knew from the day before; along with another three woman and a man none of the others knew either.
Clarice said authoritatively, "Introductions first please Amelia and then I can check over Harry and return to the bank."
All of the new arrivals noticed that the Director of Magical Law Enforcement didn't take any offence and she named all of the original occupants of the room. She then did the reverse introducing Anna Abbott and her daughter Hannah with my niece Susan Bones; Pinkie Patil is the mother of Padma and Parvati, as if you couldn't guess they are twins; Eleanor Greengrass is Daphne's mother and Remus Lupin was one of Harry's parent's friends, to the rest of the room.
Clarice and Harry had started leaving the room but Remus stopped them and said, "Harry, I know that your parents recommended that I be given a job here, however there is something that they both knew and I believe that it is only right that you should all know as well . . . I am a werewolf."
Harry looked at him and said, "I know virtually nothing of this world I was sort of dropped into it yesterday, however, my parents didn't seem to have any problem with this, so I don't see why it should particularly concern me . . . welcome to my house." Harry then shook his hand.
As he was turning to leave with Clarice when she said, "Mr Lupin, for as long as you work here Gringotts will supply you with the latest version of the Wolvesbane potion." and she went upstairs with Harry.
As the talking broke out between the adults the three resident girls noticed the attention of the five new girls was divided between themselves, the marvellous view over the bay and the food. The three dragged the five over to the buffet and all eight were soon at the far end of the table chatting, all were giggling and some of them were even eating.
When the pair came back down the adults were congregated around the near end of the table; some of them were eating, others were just nibbling; everyone asked how he was and they were told that he was doing fine.
Emma smiled at him and said, "We were going to talk about setting up the school."
Harry looked at Clarice and said, "I know that you work for Gringotts, but I would think that this is more of a job for one of those account manager people? . . . I seem to have acquired three of them."
Clarice gave him a huge smile and promised that she would get at least one of them to come, and then she reminded all of them that Harry would have to go to Gringotts medical facility the next day. It was about his scar, there was some strange magic associated with it; it might be a bit boring for them but his young friends could come with him if they wanted to.
Harry walked her to the Portal.
When he returned he asked how much the senior teachers in a magic school were paid; when the discussion settled down they had settled on twenty Galleons a day for when they were teaching; Remus' salary would be settled separately.
Smirking he said, "Right, that's my part done for now, so I am going to explore my house; if the new girls are staying, they haven't even seen their bedroom's yet." Behind him there was a rushed exodus of the younger females accompanied by various squeals.
After the children left the breakfast room Mme Bones was looking slightly confused, "What has happened to him? He is completely different to the boy I met yesterday."
Mia answered her, "I read the healers report from Gringotts; when we were told in Ragnok's office, what she said that they removed 'multiple memory modifications'. What she didn't elaborate on was that three of them were designed to interfere with his intelligence and reasoning ability. So what we are seeing is what Dumbledore has been trying to destroy, or maybe just subdue; but for what purpose . . . does anyone have any idea?"
Shrugging, Amelia said, "For me it has been like a toboggan ride down a very steep hill.
"Yesterday, quite by chance, I was with two of my people talking to Mafalda Hopkirk when her equipment detected a huge blast of uncontrolled magic from where Harry was living. We apparated there immediately and found a scene of mass destruction; apparently his uncle and cousin had been hitting him and he had blasted the pair of them through a load of furniture and into the walls. Bear in mind that this pair of troglodytes weighed at least twenty five stone each (160kg or 350lbs); and there was also a woman, his aunt, she was a more normal size although a bit on the thin side, she was thirty feet away and she was all but unconscious from having hit a wall probably quite hard.
"I started quizzing her, but when we saw Dumbledore coming the three of us immediately went back to the Ministry and I started going through the Potter files; I found their Wills. It seems that they have never been read, the regular Ministry, Wizengamot copies were sealed on the orders of his hairiness, the self-proclaimed leader of the very dark grey, Dumbledore; although I don't think that that is what he calls it. From reading quickly through them, the Wills that is, I thought that it was very likely that Lord Sirius Black was an innocent and thrown into Azkaban without a trial. So next I dragged his file out as well; if the whole thing wasn't so serious it would be a joke . . . the committal notes in the file were utter nonsense.
"About this time Mia floo called me and I went to Devon, whilst we were walking back from the scene of Harry's arrival one of my aurors mentioned 'Higher Magic'. . . I will be honest . . . 'Higher Magic' is something I have never knowingly come across before. No doubt if asked, the idiot Dumbledore would have an opinion on it that suited him and we lower mortals would be far too plebeian to understand what he is talking about so just give him whatsoever he asks for . . . probably Harry first . . . does anyone else have any ideas?"
Pinkie Patil opined, "In the British magical world there seems to be a dearth of information on any subject that requires an IQ in three figures to understand, and if it is magic which the underpowered inbred pureblood morons can't do it, they will call it Dark Magic and then they can ban it.
"Has it never occurred to any of them that real dark wizards will find and learn really dark magic because they simply ignore all of the rules and do what they want?
"Sorry, I went off on a bit of a rant there.
"Higher Magic by its very nature is not very well understood . . . anywhere; however it does seem to have some vague rules; one appears to be that it is always for the Greater Good of the magical world. Not Dumbledore's mindless blathering, not just humans even, but the betterment of all creatures, people and races of good will. The only other thing I can remember at the moment is that it never seems to last very long; usually it has finished its work before anyone realises that it is happening.
"Let's talk about what we know of this situation. Harry was being badly beaten by his relations and he blasted them into the walls to stop them; at the same time he blew through anti portkey and anti Apparation wards that had been set by one of the most powerful wizards we know of. He, Harry that is, destroyed one of the two bindings on his magic and he severely damaged the other, bear in mind that these had been applied by Dumbledolt. Finally he landed about one hundred and fifty to two hundred miles away at the empty side of a picnic tablecloth, with three very friendly, light sided girls who are near enough his own age; they were sat at the other three sides. The majority of witches and wizards can't apparate that far let alone everything else he did.
"Was this 'Higher Magic' . . . ? It could well be . . . if it isn't I don't know what it is other than the most extraordinary series of coincidences I have ever heard of. I believe that there is quite often a prophecy involved, I will ask Ashok, my husband, about that; however it does offer a solution to the boy who lived conundrum. The death curse will not work if the target is considerably more powerful than the caster, and Harry's magic is obviously very, very, powerful; the backlash would have destroyed Voldemort."
Eleanor Greengrass said, "I think we are all aware that this should be kept very quiet; so let's talk about this school, what subjects are going to be covered?"
"The Potters 'Wills' give us an idea of the way James and Lilly were thinking." Remus was scanning through a list in front of him. "There are actually two lists the first one is almost compulsory; the second is more like 'if feasible'.
"I better start off by telling you that Hogwarts does not teach a lot of this stuff . . ."
Once outside the breakfast room they slowed to a giggling walk, Harry stopped before going up the stairs and called, "Miffi," his elf arrived with a pop.
"Do you require help, Harry?" The elf was looking suspiciously at all of the still giggling children.
"We were thinking that the girls who might decide to come and stay here hadn't seen where their rooms will be or what they would be like, and then I wondered if there was anything they should see before we went upstairs to show them the rooms?"
"First let's go this way then, Jiffs can show you all, the library." At the mention of a library several of the girls started bouncing up and down.
The elf had headed off towards the back of the house and opened a large pair of double doors; the children followed her through the doors . . . and stopped . . . gaping in amazement.
Over three hundred thousand is an awful lot of books to have in one room, and the library was unlike any other they had even heard about, there were books from floor to ceiling stretching off into the distance; and the room appeared to be about thirty, or more, feet high. What was unique to their eyes was that they had arrive in the middle of one of the end walls; the middle being defined as some ten to fifteen foot above the floor with the ceiling about the same distance above them; they were on a balcony.
Another elf greeted them, "Good morning Master Harry and friends, my name is Jiffs and I am the head Liberian; how might I help you all."
Hermione was pouting, "I like browsing the shelves looking for something to read . . . I can't do that here!" a few of the girls were nodding agreeing with her.
Jiffs smiled at them, "There are over sixty three thousand books about magic, and mainly they are in four languages; the rest, over two hundred and fifty thousand, are mainly in English and they cover just about everything. In each of your rooms is a study area and it has bookshelves, when you are in that room you can ask for a specific book or books on a particular subject; the books you ask for will be placed in your bookcases. These books will all be magical copies and they will last until they are returned to the library, provided they remain under the wards.
"Many of the reference works currently in Hogwarts library, for various reasons, are not here; all of the history books they have are totally false and were written by purebloods, to boost the ego of the self-same purebloods. We have more accurate histories here. Hogwarts vision of muggles is about one hundred and fifty to two hundred years out of date; their astronomy is pre the Luna landings and their transport still talks about horse less carriages, and there is no mention of aeroplanes even.
"I don't think that I need to go on."
Sulkily Padma asked, "Is it impossible to browse the shelves?"
Miffi said, "I will show you all how the bookshelves in your rooms work; but until you learn how to fly a magic carpet, you will not be able to brows the shelves in here; although I will see what I can do."
"Come along, we still have a lot to see." Miffi dragged them away; the group were led through, what appeared to them to be a fairly large classroom, when they came out they passed some stairs which were going up, the elf informed them that if and when they found some teachers, they would be living up there. Next they came to a potions lab, it had fifteen work stations, and at this point Miffi told them that the adults appeared to be happy with their current numbers; although they seemed to think that a couple more boys wouldn't go amiss; Parvati was the only one who seemed to vaguely agree about this. The next room was for practical magic or duelling, the room was also large enough for them to learn to fly, certainly Magic Carpets and maybe broom's as well and on into a room with a computer on each of the dozen or so desks; Miffi told them that when they became reasonably proficient operating a computer a new one would be put into each of their rooms.
The children had stopped, and Daphne said, "We are only seven or eight years old, that all seemed to be a bit much . . . we might want to play."
Harry said, "We will play; I think that most of this lot is for the future."
Parvati agreed, "I think that Harry is right; what we were asked was 'did we want to go to a play school where we would learn a lot of things;' that is certainly what I wanted to do, but there was play and school in the question, so they are in my answer as well."
Hermione added her two penny worth, "We have a computer at home and I sometimes play games on it, but I don't think that you lot have seen the beach yet, I think that we could have some really good games down there."
Susan giggled, "Well we were told that we would be going shopping in muggle shops and that they have loads more clothes and toys and things than there are in Diagon Alley or Hogsmeade."
"Can we all read properly?" Hannah asked.
Looking down Harry said, "My aunt and uncle wouldn't let me read hardly anything, I can read but I wasn't allowed to practice much; I don't think that my cousin could read properly and they didn't want me showing him up."
Hugging him Ginny said, "Well it was much the same in our house, I am not sure if Ron can read at all, and the twins were quite likely to set a book on fire if they were around and I tried to read it . . . it is not always good having six older brothers."
She is not joking," Luna said, "most of the time her house is like a war zone, with her mother screaming her head off on top of all of the other noise."
Smiling Padma said, "Well, with all of the books in that library I am sure that we can all find something we will enjoy reading; if not we will invade a book shop or six, when we go muggle shopping. I heard my dad telling my mum that there were muggle bookshops that sold ten times as many more books than you can find in Diagon Alley."
The group moved on and having left the area more than one of them had christened the school they were led to what Hermione immediately christened a cinema; there were over four hundred Video films under stasis and these could be added to as other film titles were identified. Harry had visions of hundreds of girlie films making their way into the collection.
Hermione told them, "Besides book shops ordinary people also have shops that sell loads of films about all sorts of things; a lot of them are stories but there are a lot of them that are educational as well."
"I don't know about you lot but I think that we should show these others their rooms and then try to find our way down to the beach." From the reaction it appeared that Luna wasn't the only one who was getting fed up with what they were currently doing.
Harry spied the stairs up to the bedrooms in the distance and they all headed off to the left to go up to the bedrooms . . . it took Miffi a few second to realise that the children were not following her so she turned around and followed them.
Whilst heading for the main staircase Harry espied the adults and went to see how they were getting on; they had conjured a huge blackboard which seemed to have the seven days of the week divided up into three lessons in the morning and three lessons in the afternoon. He climbed on to a chair and sat on the table facing the blackboard to get a better look; at least pretending to have more decorum, the girls turned their chairs to face the board and sat on them.
Miffi came in and said, "Master Harry! What do you think that you are doing, get off of the table and sit on that chair properly."
As Harry was getting down and turning his chair around to sit down, Remus said, "Hello Miffi, how are you?"
The obviously surprised elf looked at Remus and smiling said, "I am very well thank you Mr Remus but this one is nearly as much trouble as his father used to be; so how are you?"
Remus winked at Harry and said, "All things considered I am doing very well, I will be staying here for a while and Sirius should be coming to stay in a few days as well."
"I hope the pair of you have grown up, if you haven't I will be thinking about asking for clothes, I am getting too old for all of the shenanigans you two used to get up to."
The smiling elf left and Daphne asked, "What's all of this then?"
None of the children were slow and they all had a pretty good idea what was on the blackboard.
Eleanor, Daphne's mother, said, "It is the schedule of lessons for the school."
There were several complaints of the 'You must be joking,' variety and Harry asked, "Can someone conjure another board without the lessons filled in please."
None of the children were watching so they didn't know who had provided the board, but both Hermione and Harry said "Thank you."
He turned to Hermione and asked, "Did you say that you read that to do magic without a wand, you just concentrate on what you want to achieve, point your hand at where you want to do it and push your magic at it and then it should happen?"
"I think that that was just about exactly what it said." Hermione agreed.
"What about all of that stuff it said before that?" Ginny asked.
Luna answered, "When Hermione and I read through that lot again . . . carefully . . . we decided all of it was a load of rubbish; the author had put it in there because he wouldn't get much money for a book with only about half a dozen lines in it."
"Right girls," Harry asked, "do we want Sundays off to go muggle shopping?"
"Harry hold on a minute," Hermione interrupted, "a lot of muggle shops are closed on Sundays, but they are all open on Saturdays so maybe that would be a better day for shopping."
Parvati smiled, she had been looking closely at the schedule the adults had made for them, "Any day sounds great for shopping, and we need some time for the beach and swimming."
Harry pointed his hand at the board and slowly moved it from left to right, all of the time slots, before nine in the morning, were filled in with solid red. "How does that look?" He had eradicated the first lesson of the day.
"What's that for?" Susan asked.
He blushed, "Well I thought that if we were to get up at seven," there were several girlish grumbles, "and went down to the beach for a swim and things," this seemed to appease the grumblers, "and then when we came back up we could have a shower and breakfast; then we could have lessons. What do you all think?"
Susan said, "I would really like more time down on the beach."
"Think Sue," Hannah said, "We could always go back down there after lessons, if we wanted to."
It was a smirking Daphne who said, "I think that we should all go up and look at the bedrooms, because we newer girls still haven't seen them yet. And I don't think that these grown up type people have thought that nine o'clock in the morning here is only half past five in England. I am fairly certain that not many of them are going to want to get up at four to be ready to teach class at nine here." She stood and they all followed her out of the room . . . none of them tried to hide the giggling that erupted as they went through the door.
To be continued.
Note 2 – If you are all good boys and girls, you will have the other half of this before Christmas.