A/N: Hello ladies and gentlemen! I am back with the next chapter, and I hope you all enjoyed the article for Potter and Harry's breakthrough, it helped set up a few things! So with that, on with the story!
Massive slow down on the revisions now guys, we're on the home stretch!
Warning; Mentions of abuse, and swearing,
Disclaimer; I'm not J.K,
Down in his labs, Harry placed his new cauldron down with care and began to inspect it. It was in perfect condition and was well worth the money, it would last years, and even if the mix exploded then the cauldron wouldn't be damaged. Diamond cauldrons were near impossible to break – according to Salazar anyway. Harry had never worked with one himself, but he had watched Salazar use it twice before, it was been fascinating.
Harry placed a copy of his formula on his work station and cast a tempus, he cursed when he saw it was approaching dinner and hastily left, sealing the door as he went. He had most of the ingredients in both labs, but he would need to shed a tail feather and cry in his phoenix form – sometimes he was extremely thankful he had such an animagus form. Harry floo'd home and skipped in to the dining room, chirping his greetings to his family and took he is seat.
"Hey, Pup. Where have you been?" Sirius asked, eyebrows raised at his bright spirit.
"At the castle," He replied.
"How did your mission of 'whining until he agrees' work in getting the Dark Lord to take you shopping." Remus inquired, amusement lacing his tone. Harry looked at him with a grin.
"Moony, it's almost like you have no faith in me." Harry mock gasped and the werewolf laughed.
"I have faith, but the likelihood of anyone convincing the Dark Lord to be there shopping partner is nil."
"Well it just proves how wrong you are then, doesn't it?" Harry said slyly, and took copious amounts of pleasure when both of them choked.
"I'm sorry?" Sirius coughed and Harry outright smirked at them both.
"Marvolo took me shopping." He told them, extremely proud of himself, "My diamond cauldron is at the castle because I didn't want to bring it through the floo."
"You're lying!" Remus said stunned, "No way did you actually manage to convince the Dark Lord to take you shopping."
"Yes, I did. And I got a free book out of it because he scared Borgin in to submission." Harry said pulling out his book. They both looked at him in a stunned sort of incredulity and Harry grinned and began on his dinner.
"The Dark Lord took you shopping." Sirius muttered in disbelief, "Shopping,"
"We had quite a pleasant conversation as it were," Harry said thoughtfully, "Did you know that Marvolo can speak twenty different languages, human and magical?"
"No, I didn't." Remus replied almost absently, "I assume it isn't something most would know."
"He's fascinating." Harry said.
"Harrison, son, Pup," Sirius began slowly, hesitantly.
"I love you, but you genuinely scare me." He said so seriously that both Harry and Remus cracked up.
"You just have to look at it from my point of view." Harry said once he had controlled his laughter, he was wiping his eyes where tears had escaped, "I was not a witness to the first war, I literally know the man from my own observations and how he interacts with me and Salazar. I do not fear him, I respect his power, I would foolish not to, but I do not fear him."
"I guess it would be different," Remus allowed.
"And didn't you speak to him, with uncle Lucius, in the ministry?" Harry asked his dad, "What was that like?"
"Pretty intense, but not what you would think. I suppose I see what you mean, when you don't think of the first war then he's like most other high end Lords, albeit a much more powerful and intimidating one." Sirius agreed eventually.
"I still think you're insane." Sirius told him honestly.
"Thought you might,"
They had a nice dinner and Harry followed his dad and Moony up to the family room, but he kept fidgeting until Sirius shot him an exasperated look.
"Go and do what you need to do, but be back by ten if you leave the manor."
"I won't leave tonight because if I start brewing then I won't stop, and it will need constant supervision. Tomorrow on the other hand…"
"You are free to do as you wish. But do remember that you have friends." Sirius said to him.
"I know, but they're on holiday out of the country anyway at the moment. I see Draco practically everyday, and the twins can't come over yet because of… well, everything!" Harry pointed out.
"As long as you socialise, you don't want to turn in to a recluse. We have Severus for that."
"I'll tell him you said that." Harry warned and Sirius grinned.
"He knows it's the truth. You try and get that man to go out." The Black Lord said and Harry laughed.
"I'd rather not,"
"Says the boy who asks the Dark Lord to take him shopping," Remus muttered.
"Yeah, but that actually worked." Harry waved him off, "Anyway, can one of you catch my tears in a phial?"
Harry summoned a phial and handed it to Moony, he changed in to his phoenix and flew over to land on his shoulder.
"Wow," Moony breathed stunned.
"That is truly amazing," Sirius agreed, placing down his book and going over to examine the phoenix closer. Harry preened under the attention, his bird instincts were pleased with the gentle petting hands.
"Come on then, tear up birdie." Remus said and Harry threw him a look that was clearly unimpressed. Remus help up the phial for him and Harry concentrated on producing the tears, it was more difficult than most would think, but once he had them flowing he was able to fill the phial. He shook his body and his tail until four feathers fell out, he trilled happily and flew back to his chair, changing back slumping to the side.
"Ugh, I had forgotten that's pretty tiring." Harry groaned, "The tears take it out of you."
"Your form is amazing," Remus told him truthfully.
"Thanks," Harry smiled, "I really did catch a break."
"Here," Remus passed him the phial, and the four feathers, "What's the feathers for?"
"Two for potions, one for Severus which will, no doubt, go on potions and the other is for Marvolo for a quill. He likes black things." Harry told them, "What's the time? I really haven't got the effort to check myself."
"Ok, I'm going to pack this away for tomorrow and go to bed." Harry said, getting up stretching.
"You are allowed to have breakfast at the castle if you wish to get up and go out which, knowing you, you would have wanted to do and done anyway." Sirius said smiling slightly, Harry grinned and gave him a hug.
"Thanks dad, you're the best."
Harry hugged Moony and left for his room. He packed up his ingredients in a summoned case, he packed Severus' in a smaller case and boxed Marvolo's up like a gift before climbing in to bed and falling to sleep.
After rechecking his ingredients three times, Harry flamed to the castle and headed down to his labs humming a merry tune as he went. He was excited, he had planned out every detail by isolating what elements needed what and created the potion like that. It was a harder way, most came up with the ingredients they needed and then experimented with the times and recipe, but Harry preferred to do each individually so when he actually came to making the potion it was almost guaranteed to work. Harry set up his station almost absently, but he was careful of his cauldron and made sure he had it placed the correct height above the flames. Before he began prepping his ingredients, Harry crushed the tail feather until it resembled a odd mush and then he placed it in his marble mortar and pestle and allowed three drops of tears before grinding it in to an inky pulp. He placed it on the shelf on the opposite side of the room so it could set for him to use later.
"Here goes nothing." Harry muttered to himself. He took a deep breath before beginning his work. It was the most meticulous potion he had ever created, even more so than his shield, and it was made worse by the fact that some of the instructions had to be done within seconds of each other whilst also prepping things. Harry added two unicorn hairs before bringing it to the boil, it was an odd brown colour as it boiled but Harry watched it for three minutes before lowering the heat and allowing the potion to settle on a dull red. He continued through his instructions, until it was time to simmer for 30 minutes, Harry was tempted to leave, but he needed to stir it three times clockwise every 3 minutes.
Instead, he finished preparing the rest of his ingredients, and ran over the instructions again to make sure he had everything correct. Harry combined Murtlap essence with one phoenix tear to enhance the healing qualities and then stirred in the essence of a crushed Sopophorous Bean and kept at it until it went orange in colour. He remembered to stir his simmering cauldron when his alarm flashed too. Harry sprinkled in a single Ashwinder scale to the Murtlap mix, which had been ground to powder, in to the liquid and watched as it went ivory. He added two counter clockwise stirs to thicken it before setting it aside to finish waiting on the main potion. When the potion was ready, Harry took it off the heat and picked up his secondary mix, using both of his hands, Harry poured the mix in to the centre of the potion in one steady stream.
He watched as it seemed to form a ball and it in the middle, he raised an eyebrow and checked his instructions to make sure he hadn't made a mistake and when he found he hadn't he shrugged and continued. He replaced it on the heat and brought the heat up 10o at a time until it was boiling again, Harry watched fascinated as the ivory ball seemed to crack and split in to the rest of the potion and he saw where the binding agent was needed. The main potion had settled on a rich red, but in the middle of it was ivory where the liquids refused to fuse together. Harry took a deep breath and checked the temperature of the potion, his phoenix solution needed to be added at exactly 83.5o or it would ruin the whole thing. Harry grabbed his phoenix solution and grinned when he saw it had semi solidified, it slid out easily and Harry hovered by the cauldron watching as the temperature decreased at an agonising pace. As soon as it hit 83.5, Harry dropped it in to the cauldron and watched as an inky black sheen covered the entire liquid.
He couldn't tell if it worked out yet, it had to remain simmering untouched for 2 and a half hours and then it had to sit to cool until it had developed a mirror sheen before it could be bottled. Harry double checked the heat of the flames, and cast his alarm to alert him 5 minutes before the time was up before leaving the room; he was starving. Harry went to the dining room and asked for a late breakfast/early lunch and wolfed it down, he didn't remember food tasting so good and ended up eating nearly double what he usually ate before he was done. Minding the time, Harry went to find Marvolo who was, yet again, in his study and he let himself in.
"Just because you are the only other person that has access to this castle, it does not give you the right to stroll in to any room you wish." Marvolo drawled, neither looking up from his book nor looking remotely bothered by Harry's lack of manners.
"If you actually cared you put up wards which would alert me to knock." Harry countered, sitting down.
"It is polite courtesy," Marvolo said.
"A courtesy I would not get of off you." Harry pointed out.
"Very well, as I am unable to curse you, what do you want?" Marvolo sighed sitting back and looking at the pre-teen with a bored expression.
"It's nice to see you too." Harry agreed brightly.
"I saw you yesterday,"
"You know, I believe I allow you too much leniency." Marvolo told him and Harry smirked.
"You would have been in a worse mood if you truly believed that." Harry said easily, "Besides, you know I am one of the only ones, if not the only one, to not see you as the terrifying and powerful Dark Lord."
"True, it is rather… refreshing." Marvolo admitted somewhat reluctantly.
"Besides, we are actually related, I'm that annoying nephew like being that never goes away and happens to be your Heir that you hold a binding contract with. If you didn't just go with it, you probably would have been insane by now." Harry said all of this as if it was the most obvious thing in the world. Marvolo just looked at him for a few moments before signing heavily through his nose.
"What makes it even more agitating, is that you speak the truth."
"I know, its brilliant, right?"
"What do you want?" Marvolo asked again and Harry pouted.
"Fine, spoil my fun." He grumbled, "And I brought you a gift."
"Yes, look." Harry drew out the box and handed it over, Marvolo raised an eyebrow but opened it and his eyes widened slightly.
"This is a black phoenix feather,"
"Yes, I thought it would make a lovely quill for you. It has magical properties and everything,"
"It is appreciated," Marvolo said in a grateful tone, "You were here rather early this morning. Am I to assume that it was because of your latest potion?"
"Yes, I have-," Harry motioned his floating alarm, "Just under an hour before I can see if it has been a success. I have an estimated colour for a final project, but I cannot know until I test it on someone which means I need a specimen."
"All of my people will more than likely be unconscious when we arrive back, the shock and the strain being too much for their weakened stated. You can test it on an extra before giving it to one of mine." Marvolo decided after a moment of thought; Harry grinned.
"Wonderful," Harry said brightly, "Salazar always went to the prisons to test his potions. These dementors never used to guard them, but the whole place was warded in blood. All those who were sentenced to death, or had life sentences were automatically put in the 'human testing' sections. It was a place where all apprentices could come and test their new magics and creations."
"Why they do not do anything like that these days is something I do not understand. I know that the dementors are torturous, but why keep prisoners in there for life when they could be of use. And any 'ethical' problem people may raise is ridiculous because the dementors are some of the foulest creatures to walk this earth." Marvolo said to Harry, shaking his head.
"Coming from you they must be bad." Harry said looking a little shocked.
"And they were on my side."
"Oh wow," Harry blinked a few times, "Oh, I know what I was supposed to tell you. Dad and Moony want to come to Azkaban."
"Well, when I mentioned Azkaban to them, they, for some reason, reacted badly and said there was no chance that I was going. Of course, I was shocked, I mean, I learned the patronus and everything, and the only way I could get them to even consider it was me suggesting that they come with me. And the other day, after I told dad about Bella, he said he and Moony wanted to come to Azkaban, he wants to make sure she's ok." Harry explained.
"I can understand why they may have been disagreeable to the thought of you in Azkaban now that I think about it." Marvolo mused.
"Really? Uncle Lucius said the same thing." Harry shrugged.
"Yes, it is a rather unpleasant place. The agreement of Black and Lupin will be nothing but beneficial, but he needn't worry about Bella, she is of my main concern." Marvolo said, he had a curious expression on his face and Harry tilted his head slightly confused until he blinked.
"You are worried about her." He stated, and Marvolo looked at him sharply.
"What makes you say that?" He asked neither confirming nor denying it.
"I can see it in your expression, you hide your emotions better than anyone I have ever seen, but I also grew up and was mentored by the person who created the 'Slytherin mask' and I could read Salazar too." Harry said to him and Marvolo sighed.
"None of my usual behaviours are going to have a single effect on you, are they?" He asked somewhat rhetorically.
"Honestly? I highly doubt it. Like I said earlier, I'm going to be that annoying nephew like being that never goes away. I will more than likely see past all your pretences, read your hidden emotions and genuinely do all the things everyone else can't." Harry told him brightly, "But that doesn't matter, I like you." Marvolo gave him a look of disbelief and blinked a few times as if he was shocked.
"…You like me?" He repeated, his voice oddly flat.
"Of course. You sound surprised, why?"
"People don't like me, Harrison." Marvolo stated and Harry frowned at the detached tone.
"Well I do." Harry stated firmly, "Besides, I am sure that your… Elite was it? That your Elite did in fact like you… well if Severus and uncle Lucius' behaviour are any indication."
"People don't like Dark Lords." Marvolo pointed out.
"Dark Lord's enemies don't like Dark Lords." Harry corrected, "You can't tell me that you were not closer to your elite than the rest."
"I was," He admitted.
"Exactly, they liked you. And it's pointless arguing with me, I am right. I know it. Plus, unfortunately for you, because I have/am getting to know you, we're related and I was not in the first war, you are not a Dark Lord to me. Just Marvolo." Harry told him and Marvolo looked at him with an expression that seemed to be confused and thoughtful.
"Just Marvolo," He repeated softly, "You know… I think I like the sound of that."
"Good," Harry nodded and then looked at his clock, "Nearly there,"
"Ah yes, your potion…"
"Yes, it's a pure elixir and it is my most complex to date! Want to see it?"
"Potions are not my speciality, but I am well versed in the art." Marvolo agreed. Harry snapped his fingers and passed over the parchment,
"It is a piece of genius." Harry said. Marvolo read and, just like Severus, his eyebrows rose further and further up his head until he was staring at the page in shock.
"I only gave you the potions needed a week ago, two at the most." Marvolo said.
"I know, I was having difficulty finding a binding agent but Moony gave me the idea yesterday." Harry said, "It should have been faster given the fact I had other potions to work from."
"You are eleven years old, if this works how you have laid it out to, then this will be a medical phenomenon." Marvolo told him, "Harrison, this is unprecedented."
"I do not feel as much credit as my shield potion, but it is pretty fantastic."
"Oh, I created a potion that blocks everything and including two of the 'unforgiveables'," Harry revealed. Marvolo openly looked at him in shock.
"Two of the unforgivables? When was this? Has it been tested?"
"Tried and tested, on myself and others." Harry confirmed, "It was my first one, Salazar checked it and everything."
"That is… truly something amazing."
"I don't think you will every stop surprising me." Marvolo said with a light chuckle.
"That would be boring." Harry said with a fake shudder, "Ok, so I know what I wanted to ask you. You're like… a complete genius, and I know all of your OWL and NEWT scores, but I never looked to see if you have any masteries."
"Ah, yes, I do, and I think I hold a record for the amount." Marvolo said, "At least, I did."
"Holy Magic! How many did you get?"
"Defence, Offence, Duelling, Charms, and Runes," Marvolo answered, "But if they were available I could also have Dark Arts and Spell craft which means that, if I wanted to try, I could also gain Arithmancy."
Harry gaped at him stunned; that was absolutely incredible.
"You are…" Harry trailed of unable to find words.
"I have always taken education seriously. How can you get anywhere if you are uneducated?" Marvolo said, and Harry shook his head in a stunned awe.
"But to obtain five masteries is incredible. And I bet that is still a record." Harry said, "Are they still recorded now you've changed your name?"
"Yes, it was one of the first things I checked. Because I changed my name magically and fully then the records changed with it, so it reads that Marvolo Slytherin-Le Fey has the mastery. They made the system like that because of marriage, adoption and when people discover they have a magical name like myself." Marvolo explained and Harry nodded.
"That makes sense," He agreed, "Five masteries, that is so cool. And you could gain another if you wanted Arithmancy."
"I may take the exam to give myself good press when Dumbledore kicks off, after all, a Lord to the founders with six masteries will look extremely appealing to the public."
"Are you kidding? You would have people worshiping the ground you walk on! You're like… a walking brain."
"My intelligence is something I am prideful of. There are very few that can even scrape the surface of the things I know." Marvolo said thoughtfully. They both jumped slightly when Harry's alarm went off and Harry's eyes lit up.
"It's finally time," He said excitedly.
"I wish you luck,"
"Thanks," Harry said getting up and walking to the door, "I still can't believe you have five masteries."
"It will sink in, eventually."
"When I grow up, I am going to be just as smart as you. Just you wait!" Harry said determinedly before he was gone. Marvolo looked at the door oddly, replaying Harry's words in his mind. He had never had someone want to be like him before, sure he had had sycophants that would spew anything they had thought he had wanted to hear, but never someone who had been honestly in awe of his achievements. Granted, most didn't know truly how intelligent he was, not even Dumbledore knew, but he wasn't as egotistical about his intelligence for no reason.
Bellatrix had been the closest to awe, but that was tinged with fear, not hat be blamed her, she had grown up with parents that feared him so it was natural for her to replicate that. But that had died down, out of all of his forces she had feared him the least, and he had favoured her the most. Bellatrix did mean a great deal to him, not that he would ever admit that to anyone, besides Harrison he mentally added. The boy was a true enigma. The potions he had created were amazing, and the one he had seen was one of the complex he had ever read. Marvolo found himself oddly proud that Harrison wanted to be as intelligent as him, it was a nice feeling.
Harry jogged down to his lab practically bubbling with excitement and nervous energy, he knew that, in the back of his mind, the potion was correct, but it was still a new potion and there was always doubt – even if it was unreasonable. He had set a five minute timer when he had left Marvolo's study so he knew the exact time he had to take the cauldron of the heat to allow it to cool, and he couldn't wait to see what it looked like. Harry watched the timer like a hawk and when it got down to the final thirty seconds he walked over to his cauldron and counted down with the shining numbers. As soon as it hit zero, Harry lifted the cauldron of the heat and vanished the flames, he placed the cauldron down to cool and peaked in side.
A grin nearly split his face when he saw the soft pink colour with a pearly quality, he knew that, if he had calculated correctly, the potion would development a mirror sheen. It had to set before it could be bottled up, so while it was developing, Harry cleaned up his stations and put everything away. He always enjoyed the cleaning afterwards, it was methodical work that, he found, helped him settle after brewing. He loved brewing, but unlike most Potioneers, he didn't relax, instead he found himself more excitable; especially when working on a new one. Once everything was spotless and packed away, Harry snapped his fingers for his black book and wrote up the recipe and the process he had, and what went well.
He would update it once it had been tested, he would need to fill in its effects so it was possible for them to be edited when they made advances in potions or new plants. Harry checked his potion again and clapped happily, he could now clearly see his face reflected back at him and knew it was finished. He pulled out his crystal phials and began bottling up the potion, he had enough for twelve vials, but he was unsure of the dosage needed. He was pretty sure that one, given the potency of the potion, should be enough, but people tended to be different and some may need more than others. Once they were all bottled up, he placed them all under preservation except one which he happily took up to Marvolo, who had now retreated to the library.
"Tah dah!" He announced rather grandly.
"Your calculations were correct."
"Yes, now it need only be tested." Harry confirmed.
"What have you accomplished, Snakelet?" Salazar asked from his frame so Harry went over and showed him the potion.
"It's a pure elixir." Harry told him, "Look," He summoned the recipe and showed it to the Slytherin Founder.
"Very nice, Snakelet, I see you made ample use of other potions."
"Yes, I know it is not as good as my shied on the scale of creation, but in terms of everything else I'm pretty proud."
"As am I, you make me proud daily."
"Thanks, Sal." Harry said with a smile, "You should talk to Marvolo about his intelligence, the man's a total genius."
"Are you bragging on my behalf?" Marvolo inquired amused, Harry nodded solemnly.
"Oh this is marvellous. Speak, Young Snake, and tell me of your achievements." Salazar commanded, which, in itself, was quite a feat given the fact that he was a piece of art.
"I'll see you soon, Marvolo, I have to go boast to my dad and uncle Moony." Harry said and was waved away as Marvolo told Salazar his achievements.
When Harry got home, he had just caught the end of lunch as so he went to the dining room when Moony and his dad were sat talking about Black family business.
"Hey, cub," Moony greeted, "How did everything go?"
"Brilliantly," Harry replied, "Here, look." He placed the potion on the table and they looked at in interest.
"It looked extremely strong." Moony said, "I'm not great at Potions, but one of the first things we were taught is that potions which were mirror-like were extremely potent."
"I am going to test it as soon as we go Azkaban. Marvolo is happy for you both to accompany us,"
"You have spoken to the Dark Lord today?" Sirius asked.
"Yes, the potion had to simmer for two and a half hours, so I ate and then went to talk to Marvolo." Harry explained and then he sighed, "The man is so amazing."
"He's amazing now?" Sirius repeated with a raised eyebrow.
"Yes, when I grow up I am going to be as smart as he is. It's my new goal." Harry told them, he was well aware that he had developed a serious admiration to the man in the past couple of hours, but he really didn't care. If he was that smart when he was older then he would be set for life.
"What brought that on?" Remus asked.
"I've always known he was smart," Harry began.
"We know, you say it enough," Sirius put in and Harry didn't even bother to argue the point.
"I mean, his OWL's and NEWT's alone tell you that. Did you know he outscored Dumbledore on everything except Transfiguration, Herbology and Astronomy?"
"I didn't know that. Wow, that's impressive."
"Yes, the only person to beat one of his scores was Severus in Potions and Lily in Charms." Harry added.
"How do you know this?"
"When I was searching for who wanted the stone, I stumbled across his name and I wanted to know exactly who he was." Harry waved them off.
"Well, the one thing I didn't look in to was masteries and I asked him if he had any."
"I would hasten to guess he had one in at least Defence, and stretching to Duelling." Remus said after a moments thought.
"He had both yes." Harry confirmed, "But get this, he also has Charms, Offence and Runes."
"Wait, he had five masteries?" Sirius said shocked, "Is that even possible?"
"He has five, plus the ability to get one in Dark Arts, one in Arithmancy and one in Spell Craft." Harry told them and nodded when their jaws dropped.
"Holy shit!" Sirius breathed and it was truly a moment because Moony didn't even tell him off, "That's incredible!"
"I know, its amazing, he's amazing!" Harry gushed, "Five masteries! I'm going to do that one day, just you wait and see."
"Didn't you say yesterday that he also speaks twenty languages?" Remus clarified and Harry nodded.
"Yep, that too. And I don't doubt he had created spells and he created his rebirth ritual using the stone."
"No wonder people couldn't touch him in battle, the man is a certified genius and ridiculously powerful to boot." Sirius whistled in appreciation.
"Now, aren't you glad that I have an agreement with him?" Harry said.
"Yes, and I'm glad I opened my eyes to Dumbledore and Potter's shit. I would be dead otherwise." Sirius said shaking his head.
"Lucky break," Remus agreed.
"Now I just have to make sure I never piss him off." Sirius muttered, and this time Moony hit him.
"Oh, there will, no doubt, be times when you will annoy him. The man is way to controlling for you not to, but, unless you do it deliberately then I doubt he will curse you." Harry said, "Besides, I think that when you start spending time with him and actually get to know him that you'll like him; he's great."
"Stranger things have happened." Moony said thinking about it and Sirius scoffed.
"Don't we know it?"
Harry had wanted to show his potion off to Severus as soon as possible because the man would truly understand what had been created, but the man was working furiously on other potions and Harry knew how annoying it was when you were interrupted whilst brewing so he left him be. His dad had informed him that Lily was now mobile which set Harry on edge slightly, because it meant that their talk that had to happen was coming closer and that was something he was nervous about. He wanted answers, but he was afraid of what ones he would get.
Harry sighed and dropped down in the library, he didn't feel like working on Potions seeing as he had just finished a new one days ago, in actual fact, he didn't want to do anything academic. Sirius was attending to Black family matters with Remus, Sirius insisted that, as his mate, Remus had to suffer with him and so he dragged him along. The Malfoys were visiting cousins in France for the day, Theo and Blaise were still out of the country, he couldn't invite the twins over yet and Marvolo was out doing Dark Lord stuff which left Harry bored. He huffed and headed down to his lab, he could stock up on potions and that would kill a few hours. He knew what potions he was going to be using for his Mastery so he could practice them, he wanted to make sure he knew them backwards in French before he had to actually attend the exam. On his way down, he literally ran in to Severus who, by the looks of things, was pissed off.
"What's wrong?" Harry asked, "I thought Lily was getting better."
It was usually why the man looked to be in foul mood lately, with Lily's gradual healing he was on edge when out of her presence, but no one said anything to him; they weren't stupid.
"She is, your edited potions have worked miraculously," Severus told him, Harry had fallen in to step with the man as they made their way through the manor, "But it's the scars."
"Have you been unable to remove them?" Harry asked surprised.
"I have created four different salves since she awoke for the first time, and none of them work. Any remaining magic to indicate has long since gone, I do not know what he has done to them." Severus snarled the last bit and Harry scowled; Potter was foul.
They entered Lily's room and Harry noted that she was looking a hellava lot better than when she first arrived, not that that was something hard to accomplish, but he was surprised that she looked as good. She didn't even look too thin anymore, Severus' super advanced nutrients worked wonders and it made Harry wonder why the Potions Master could not get rid of the scars.
"You should stop berating yourself, Severus." Lily said softly, "This is not down to you."
"He must have done something to them to prolong the effects!" Severus hissed agitated, Lily didn't even react to the tone and it made Harry blink to notice how well she must have known him to not even turn a hair. When Severus usually used that tone it was enough to make fully grown men flinch, and it had reduced Hufflepuffs to tears.
"He is malicious, you know this." Lily sighed, "Does it truly surprise you that he might of?"
"No, but it makes me hate him even more." Severus grumbled, "We will need a miracle the way this is going."
Harry froze at that and he tilted his head in thought, Severus noticed this and raised an eyebrow in question.
"I do not know if it will work," Harry began, "But might I suggest miracle juice?" Severus blinked a few times before a ghost of a smile came to his face.
"That may just be the thing we are looking for."
"I'll fetch some. Has everything been logged officially?"
"Yes, Narcissa did so originally and she is a fully certified healer so it is completely official." Severus confirmed.
"Good, I wasn't sure if she had." Harry said, "I'll get the potions, and I have my newest one brewed."
Harry left the room and darted to his lab where he collected two potions and his latest one before running back up to Lily's room, he didn't like summoning potions to him as sometime the magic would react with the liquid and change its effects. He noted that if he kept running around the manor that he would be the fittest person at Hogwarts, who decided on the amount of stairs in these places? Harry knocked before he entered and handed the needed potions to Severus before standing back.
"Is that them?" Lily asked curiously, and Harry presumed that Severus told her what he was fetching.
"Yes, but this is not guaranteed to work." Harry said, "It was accidental."
"I am willing to try anything."
"Don't be alarmed." Severus warned as he uncorked the phial.
"I trust you both," She said holding out her hand. Harry was shocked at that, he had no idea what he had done to gain her trust. Severus dripped three drops on to the back of her hand and they watched as it sank in and begin spreading, it worked just as it did with Severus back in the classroom and once it had covered her hand both Severus and Harrison cast an overpowered finite. The disillusion sped up and rapidly climbed up Lily's arm before moving on to the rest of her body.
"This is strange." Lily said watching the potion.
"Yes, it was a rather odd occurrence when it happened the first time." Severus agreed, amused at the memory.
"Not to mention it was completely odd seeing you as a walking robe." Harry added with a small grin, "Do you remember how long it took us to brew the counter?"
"Twenty minutes I believe."
"Ok, so, as we are unsure as to what caused such a reaction, we'll wait twenty minutes again." Harry decided.
"Yes, but you should take some time to experiment with this." Severus told him.
"I should be able to some time in the summer," Harry said mentally making a point to ask Marvolo to take some other prisoners for him.
"Now, you mentioned you brewed your latest potion." Severus said and Harry nodded.
"Yes, here, look." He handed over the phial and smirked when Snape blinked.
"Is that a mirror sheen?" Lily's voice asked astonished.
"Yes," He confirmed.
"Very impressive, Harrison," Snape agreed.
"Thanks, your advanced nutrients opened up a few doors for me." Harry told him, "The extra components allowed me to combine it extremely well with Murtlap essence."
"I see you edited the qualities of the Murtlap. That should work alone." Severus noted and Harry hummed.
"I may test it later on, but I am working on another project next. I don't think I will take up a new one just yet." Harry decided after a minute.
"Of course. You should also concentrate on practicing your decided potions thoroughly."
"I will, I was thinking about that earlier. I wanted a break from brewing for a day, I've been in a lab nearly every day so far." Harry said to him.
"You will be testing this potion too?" Snape asked.
"Yes… Uncle wishes to see it tested before it is confirmed." Harry hoped Severus picked up on the endearment for Marvolo, it wouldn't be good for Lily to realise how close they were to Marvolo Slytherin, especially given the fact that there was no way she didn't know who he was.
"Ah yes, that us understandable." Snape said with understanding in his eyes and Harry bit back a grin.
"Twenty minutes is up." Harry pointed out. He handed the second phial over to Severus and watched as he located Lily's hand and dropped some of the liquid on to the air. Slowly, her hand slowly began to appear and both Potion Master and student watched on edge as the rest of her body came in to view. Harry's eyes widened as he saw the results of the potion, Lily's skin was completely blemish free and she looked positively radiant. Her pale skin had a soft glow about it, there was not a mark or scar anywhere in sight and what used to be lifeless dull red hair was now a rich, thick, fiery auburn that fell over her shoulder and down to rest above her waist. Severus was also looking at Lily like he had never seen her before and she looked at the pair of them warily.
"Did it work?" She asked hesitantly. Without moving, Harry conjured up a mirror to float in front of her and she gasped, she touched her face as if it wasn't her own.
"How…" She was just as speechless as them, and she span to face Harrison with an expression of awe and gratitude.
"I don't know how to do this properly, and I know it will never be enough, but thank you. For everything, you have done so much for me and you had no reason to, if anything you should have condemned me." Lily said to him, her voice shaking in an effort to keep it controlled. Harry looked at her in the eyes and saw nothing but open gratitude and confusion and internally sighed, he knew it was going to happen and he knew it had to happen, but that didn't make him prepared for it. That was no matter. He was of Gryffindor blood, Godric had chosen him as his Heir for a reason, he was going to channel that fabled Gryffindor bravery.
"I think it is time we talked." He stated, his voice completely even and his face of a calm façade. Lily nodded, slightly surprised, she had not expected him to want to speak to her yet, she had not expected anything from him really and yet he had done so much for her already.
"Ok," She answered.
"I will give you some privacy." Severus murmured, "Do you mind if I make use of your labs?"
"Go ahead, Sev, you are keyed in." Harry said easily, "And if you look in the ingredient cupboard there is a box labelled with your name, consider it a gift." Severus raised an eyebrow at that, but nodded and swept from the room with his robes billowing behind him. Harry looked at Lily again and bit back a sigh as he took a seat; this was going to be a long conversation.
There we go, a bit of everything in here, things are really picking up now and its time for Lily's and Harry's talk! I hope you like it, and if you do, please drop a review!