- Fortunam Iuuare -
A/N: I don't own squat, save for the plot. I know it's not as long, and I'm sorry. I actually wanted this on the end of the first chapter, though.
The Rookery – Devon
Brought up short, Sirius just stared blankly at the wide eyed, two year old girl on the sofa. He had no come back that was allowable for young ears and found himself completely out of his depth. Instead, he deflected. "Hello there. Do I know you?"
She still smiled innocently, much to Lily's amusement. The redhead turned to Sirius. "If I have to neuter you, Black, I will. I protect my own."
Sirius turned a gimlet eye at Lily, which was his usual response to threats towards his masculinity. In the meantime, James chuckled along with the others in the room and moved around his best mate to get to his wife. Just the sight of her holding their son did wonders for his mood. However, when Harry turned to look at him, he saw tear tracks going down his face. That disturbed him, as Harry hardly ever cried.
"Here, now. What's the matter little man?" James asked as he leaned over to give Lily a quick kiss. Looking back to his son, he saw a rather angry expression. "What's wrong, son?"
Harry's hand reached out and grabbed the middle bar of his glasses and pulled. James reacted quickly and helped him take them off. "Sorry. Forgot you don't like them. Now what's wrong?"
"Da," Harry said, letting go of the glasses. Hand free, he reached out to touch the side of his father's face. "Lub yoo."
"Love you too, Harry," James said with a grin, while lightly ruffling his son's hair.
Lily smiled at the sight of her husband turning to absolute goo. The silly grin he was sporting only came out for her before, and now appearing for their son. Smirking at the sight, she was the only one who saw the hint of red light coming in between Harry's hand and James' cheek, before her husband collapsed backwards on the floor.
"Prongs!" Sirius shouted as he leapt forward to catch his friend. He didn't see Harry pointing at him, but did catch the hint of red light before his world turned black.
There was a beat of silence as everyone gaped at the pair on the floor. Dan and Emma alternated between staring at the men and the toddler in Lily's arms. Celeste simply blinked in confusion, while her husband's eyes got even larger than they normally were.
It was Hermione's harrumphing sigh that broke the silence. "Show off," she mumbled.
"Worked, didn't it?" Harry piped up with a grin. "Got those flushers, Mrs. Lovegood?"
Snapped out of their state, Xeno said he'd get them and left the room. Emma's question of what happened went unanswered for a bit, while Lily openly stared at her son in complete shock.
Harry matched his mother's green eyed stare with his own in a 'well practised' look of pure innocence. "Constant Vigilance?" he asked with a slow grin.
An involuntary snort came out of Lily, which brought a snerk from Celeste, which then turned into near hysterical laughter. "You little snot," Lily said through her chuckles. Harry smiled wide, with his head lightly vibrating in amusement.
Outside, in what would be considered the back garden, the Grangers and Celeste sat with the children while watching the doings. Dan was in between his wife and daughter, while Celeste was next to Harry, who was holding Luna again. The giggling infant was matched by Harry and Hermione's matching wide grins as they held on to one another.
What had the kids amused and the muggles confused, was the sight before them. Lily had levitated James out back, while Xeno did the same with Sirius. With a conjured divider between the two pairs and a modesty obscuring haze between them and the observers, Lily and Xeno divested James and Sirius of their clothing.
Even though she was just as confused as her husband, Emma wanted to quantify what was happening. "So, while I understand what 'flushing' means, why do they need to be disrobed for the… potion to work?"
Instead of immediately going into a lecture, Hermione let Celeste handle the explanations. "It has to do with the body's response to expunging the foreign potions. If it was a recent thing, then all one would need to do would be to sit on the toilet with a bucket in front of them, as it would quite literally come out both ends.
"With long-standing potions exposure, though, a flushing agent will also cause the potion or potions to come out of a person's pores like perspiration," Celeste continued. "So, in addition to the mess that would occur normally, it would quite literally soak their clothing. While it is rather simple to clean clothes, some things can be difficult to get out completely in the wash."
Emma nodded, while Harry tacked on his own observation. "Plus, it'll be easier to detect items on their person that would have tracking charms, which is what mum's doing – I think." Turning his head up to look at Celeste, he asked her a direct question. "Does it bear stating that the entrances to the Department of Mysteries dispel any and all forms of tracking?"
Startled, Celeste looked down. "No it doesn't. Would it be fair to assume that you were a part of it?"
"All free of us were," Luna said without opening her eyes. Only after Harry and Hermione smirked, did she open them up in a bit of a scowl. "Huss. No deef makes id hard do dalk."
"I think it's adorable," Hermione said as she reached over to play with Luna's dimples. Eventually, Luna's scowl faded. Harry's kisses to the top of her lightly fuzzed head helped with her frustration too.
Meanwhile, Lily had to have a bubble charm up to avoid the foulness of what was leaking out of her husband. She kept her temper in check behind her occlumancy barriers as she went over each item of clothing. Two tracking charms were immediately found and moved to a small rock. A proven hunch had her nearly swearing, as she found a third on James' Heir Ring. That one was difficult to move, but she was able to in the end.
On the other side of the divider, Xeno was similarly methodical. The only difference was in the amount of trackers found and relocated. Two quick spells had another rock tapped. He had to have a bubble head charm as well, as the mess simply reeked.
A thorough scorgifying, along with quick blasts of soap and water, both men were cleaned up and redressed. Everyone then proceed back in the house, with Lily and Xeno levitating the other two. Once inside, Hermione suggested they tie them to chairs to keep them from doing anything stupid. Harry suggested calming draughts, but that was discouraged as being too soon to the flushing potions to be effective.
James and Sirius knew they were in trouble. Each had a sixth sense about them that said their brother in all but blood was sitting next to them. Both men were groggy, had a hell of a headache and hoods over their heads. Oh, then there was the highly disturbing sensation of being thoroughly tied to the chairs they were sitting in to contend with as well.
"Prongs?" Sirius whispered. A grunt confirmed what he sensed. "We're in trouble, aren't we?" Another grunt agreed with that assessment. "Pants," he grumbled.
Snickers worried the pair of them. They could tell there were at least three people in the room with them. However, a heaving sigh in front of them alarmed both. "Lils?" James said in a hush.
"Only you two would be stupid enough to ingest anything while in close quarters with Severus," Lily said in a voice full of disappointment. "Now, before I remove those hoods, you two are going to answer a simple question."
The tenseness of both men slacked as they relaxed into their chairs. This wasn't a Death Eater trap. However, they then tensed up again when they realized that they were at Lily's complete mercy. "Ah, shit," James swore.
"Language," a tiny and high pitched voice said from their far left. That was followed by light giggling that both of them recognized. "Well, it seems you get it honestly, dear," the young voice continued.
"Absolutely," another young voice said. The fact that they recognized this voice was in complete contrast to the complexity of the word that was spoken.
Sirius turned his head in their general direction, then pivoted to his right, where he would've seen James if he didn't have a hood over his head. "Uh, Prongs? I think we're in trouble."
"Definitely," Lily said, snapping both men upright. "Now, I'm going to ask a question. Whomever gives the right answer will have their hood removed."
James, in an attempt to be placating, spoke in an overtly innocent voice. "What's the question, dear heart?" That got more snickers from their far left.
Rolling her eyes, Lily decided to get it over with. "James; Sirius; Where is the best place for us to hide from the Dark Bastard?"
Unknown to the men, Hermione's eyes went wide at Lily's profanity. Through their bond, she told her wife and husband, 'Apparently, you get it from both sides, Harry.'
At the same time, James and Sirius replied in a very twin like response: "Rowan Hill."
"Oops, it appears that we have a tie," Lily said with a smirk. "Now for the tie breaker, a follow-up question: "Why the devil were we in Godric's Hollow?"
"Uhh," James said rather intelligently. "That's a rather good question, love." He turned his head to the left. "Any ideas, Paddy?"
"Not really," Sirius said with a shake of the head. "Other than the fact that Dumbledore insisted on it, I don't have a ruddy clue. The house wards are better than Hogwarts, so that part doesn't make any sense."
Arms crossed and grinning in triumph, Lily was preening. "Exactly. The wards can even be configured into a more effective Fidelus. So the question remains: Why?"
Shaking his head, James was flying blind… literally. "Lils, I don't have a bloody clue. It made sense a while back, but I have no idea why. What's the punchline?"
There was a pause before Lily laid it out to the pair. "Both of you had been administered loyalty potions that were keyed to Dumbledore. And, if that isn't bad enough, Severus brewed them."
"Snivellous?" Sirius said in an unmanly high pitch. "I'll bloody kill the grease stain!"
James struggled against the ropes binding him. "Not if I get a hold of him first!"
A noise-cracker spell stopped them both from wriggling. Lowering her wand, Lily shook her head. "Now you know why you two are tied down. I will not let either of you up, unless you agree to not go immediately after them. To give you both a bit of incentive, the Marauders are going to prank the shite out of them and the Dark Bastard."
"Leave that loser and marry me," Sirius said, breathy voice full of admiration.
James shook his head. "No way in hell. Besides, what would Amelia say?"
"Oh, be quiet," Sirius grumbled.
"Do I have your Marauder Oaths?" Lily asked them.
Together, they intoned. "We solemnly swear."
Their hoods were whipped off, and they blinked rapidly in the light to find that they were in the middle of the Lovegood's main sitting room. The sight of the victorious dark ginger had them both grinning pensively. "Lils?" James prodded, "What's this all about? Why would the headmaster dope us?"
"Short answer?" Harry said, gaining their stunned attention. "He's after the Potter Vaults. Long answer is that he wants to be known as the new Merlin. Defeating two Dark Lords in one lifetime would cement that in his mind, the arrogant arse."
"Language!" Hermione said, thumping his arm.
Harry turned to look at her. "If they can swear, I can swear. I'm already on at least eleven years of no nookie, so give me something I can do to compensate." His voice was as pleading as the look on his face.
The two uninformed Marauders openly stared as Hermione patted Harry on the shoulder in placation, then proceeded to give him a healthy and rather adult open mouthed kiss.
"We've missed something," Sirius slowly stated the obvious.
Nodding, James was in full agreement. The sight of his son's dreamy face as the girl pulled back from him was completely amusing, however. "I don't remember signing a wedding contract," he deadpanned.
"Wouldn't hold if you did or tried to," Hermione said with a grin. "Can't contract an already married person without their consent. So, no going to the Weasleys, mister," she shook a finger in his general direction.
James blinked. "Aside from the fact that their six kids are all boys, how in the world are you two already married?"
It was Harry's turn to blink. "Oh, that's right. Ginny won't be born til August. Still, the statement stands. No bartering my favours for alliances. It's bad form and completely against the Potter Motto."
"Fortunam Iuuare?" James asked in a look of complete confusion.
Harry shook his head with a grin. "Figuli Facere Non Ordinarius."
Laughter sparked from everyone except Emma. "My Latin seems to be a bit rusty. What was that?"
Hermione looked at her mum with a light smile. "Fortunam Iuuare was the Potter Motto, which meant 'Fortune Favours the Bold'. We changed it to 'Figuli Facere Non Ordinarius,' which means 'Potters Don't Do Normal'."
James was suddenly rather keen. "What do you mean, you changed it?" he asked, somewhat accusingly.
"I was the only one left, Dad," Harry explained. "Well, that was until I married these two beauties, of course," he said while squeezing Hermione close and slightly lifting Luna with his left arm.
"Time turner accident?" Sirius asked, completely missing the 'only one left' part.
Hermione shook her head. "Intentional Lovegood Ritual. Promise you wont run off, and we can talk about it over dinner or something." Pausing, she blinked and grinned at Luna. "Good idea. Between the five of them, they should be able to cast it. Midnight would be best, I think."
"Cast what, dear?" Lily asked.
"The Fidelius for The Rookery," Harry said with a grin.
James shook his head. The late dinner explanations from the kids were too mind boggling. Xeno's agreement with them was the only reason he accepted it, and that was still stretching his sanity.
While they weren't forthcoming with a lot of details, his son and apparent daughters-in-law did give a general overview of the reasons they made the trip. He thought Voldemort was insane before, but assassinating the Royals just proved how deep into madness the dark bastard went.
Then on top of everything, was finding out that Dumbledore was a Dark Lord hiding in plain sight. He never would've thought that before. However, the accusations that the Headmaster was responsible for his parent's death did make sense after a fashion. Charles Potter was rather vocal in the alliance. That, and he was all for using deadly force against the Death Eaters, which was against Dumbledore's policy.
It also made sense with Dumbledore's advice for James not to claim the Potter Head of House Ring. As proxy, Dumbledore voted a huge block in the Wizengamot. Claiming the ring would change the entire political landscape. They eventually decided to have James claim it anyway in secret, as his 21st birthday was in a few weeks. The Goblins would honour that decision, as long as their profit margin was high enough, of course.
To say that James Potter and Sirius Black were upset over the news was like saying a herd of Hippogriff running over you would leave you with slight bruising. It took a body bind from Lily to keep Sirius from leaving in a murderous rage. Charles and Dorea were the parents Sirius always wanted.
All further planning was set aside for the following morning, as everyone would be completely spent after the ritual was over. Thankfully it was a Friday evening, as the Grangers wouldn't need to be anywhere. Celeste insisted on everyone staying the night, and set aside rooms for everyone.
The most shocking bit, or not so shocking, was that Hermione and Harry refused to sleep anywhere without each other or Luna. Celeste ended up expanding Luna's crib, while the Potter Elves retrieved clothing and other necessities for everyone.
Looking around the main living area, James mentally went over the spell that they were about to undertake. The three children were in the centre of the cleared area, with Luna lightly napping, while the five magical adults surrounded them in a circle. Lily was on James' left, with Sirius on his right. Xeno was next to Sirius, while Celeste was between Xeno and Lily. Only the Grangers were outside of things, simply observing through their yawns.
"We ready for this?" Sirius asked as he looked at everyone. They'd gone over the spell twice without wands. Xeno would start it, James would go next, then Celeste, Sirius and Lily, ending with all five of them incanting part of the last.
Xeno smiled at his wife, then at the others. "Once again, thank you all for this." Squaring himself, he waited till the others held up their wands before he began. Magic enhanced everyone's voice.
"Defendat Omnes A Nocentibus," Xeno started.
"Maneant Illi Intus Occulti," James intoned, causing a slight breeze in the room.
"Averte Volentibus Nocentibus," Celeste said in a lilting voice, increasing the pressure of magic.
"Hoc Loco Oblivioni," Sirius continued the spell. Making the air feel quite heavy.
"Abscondere Intra Animam Hadrian Iacomus Potter," Lily's voice echoed with the air whipping around them all.
Together, the five pointed their wands at Harry. Each said one word of the final incantation – patterned as before in a pentagram – starting with Xeno and ending with Lily.
A stream of white mist emanated from each wand and entered Harry. He inhaled sharply, before finishing the ritual. "The Rookery lies in Devon, between Shining Hills and The Burrow." His adult voice startled everyone, including himself.
To an outside observer, the tower that resembled a rook from a chess set simply disappeared. The surrounding grounds appeared to shrink, drawing the outside land in. The ripping noise that it caused was quite loud, if anyone other than those inside were to hear it, of course.
There was a moment of silence that broke with Dan's whisper. "…wow." Emma just nodded in agreement.
Sirius summed everything up with his usual nonchalant wit. "Okay, kids. I'm knackered. Where's my bed?"
"You're single," Celeste grinned tiredly at him and thumbed at the couch behind her.
Blinking, Sirius looked at it with a bit of a frown. "Bugger."
"Language," Hermione said through a huge yawn.
James looked at the three kids and didn't know what to think. Technically, his son was over twice his age, no matter what he looked like. Remembering how he taught him how to ride that training broom put a small smile on his face. It was a tired and sad smile, but it was there. Seeing him hold his infant wife while his toddler wife rested her head on his shoulder got him moving. "Okay, I know you three are all older than us, but you're still kids. Time for bed."
Harry and Hermione didn't argue, and Luna was already asleep. The mothers swept their respective child up into their arms and followed Celeste up the stairs.
The three wizards were blinking tiredly when Dan got their attention. "So, this Fidelius is like a blind?" At their blank expressions, he elaborated. "Sorry. I served at Her Majesty's Pleasure in the Royal Marines, SBS. That spell hid the house?"
"More than that," Xeno said with a nod. "It made anyone that ever knew about our home to completely forget where it is."
Dan blinked. "Handy. So, what was that mist that went into Harry?"
Grinning, Sirius chuckled. "He's the only one besides Xeno here that can tell anyone where this place is. That mist was the combined knowledge of this location from anyone alive that knew of it. With the state of the war as it is, Harry is the only one that could tell anyone, as he's the designated secret keeper. Well, Xeno too, but he owns the place…"
"And he won't tell anyone where he lives," Dan finished with a nod. "All right, but what about us?"
James stretched his back out with a bit of a keening groan. "Well, we can talk about this place all we want. However, if there's a chance that someone is listening in, the spell itself prevents us from even speaking the location. We can talk about it with each other of course, but if we're in public or even if there's someone eavesdropping, none of us will be able to say where The Rookery is."
"Understood," Dan said with another nod, reverting to his military background.
"Any idea what this plan of theirs is?" Sirius asked, flopping onto the couch.
James and Xeno shrugged, but Dan had a thoughtful look on his face. "Harry looked me in the eye when they mentioned it." That confused the wizards, but got Dan thinking about it.
At a bit after three in the morning, Hermione was roused from Luna's adult mental voice. "Oh, Gross."
Blinking her eyes open, she regarded the tiny blonde on her chest. Harry was curled up next to her on her left, slightly drooling on her shoulder. Rolling her eyes, she mentally prodded Luna. "What's the matter, sweetie?"
There was a grumble, which sounded odd coming from a baby. "I'm barely three months old, and just discovered that I hate nappies."
"Huh?" was Hermione's confused response, before she realized. "Oh!" Giggling, she levitated Luna up a bit and flicked her fingers, vanishing the mess. It was a trick she learned from Daphne Greengrass of all people, vanishing waste while leaving the nappy in place. "There you go, sweetie. Better?"
"I will be once I get control over that." Luna sighed as she came to rest on Hermione again. "Thank you. Oh wonderful. I want pudding, now."
The door to the nursery opened, and a bleary eyed Celeste tiptoed into the room. She grinned at them and saw that Hermione was awake. "Everything okay?" she whispered.
"Just changed her," Hermione replied just as quietly with a grin. "She's wanting pudding now, though."
Chuckling, Celeste shook her head. "That's a daytime food." The whimpering infant looked up at her with wide pleading eyes. "Oh, no dear. As much as I hate to admit it, you're not that innocent any more."
"Snokaks," Luna grumbled in a pout.
Reaching in, Celeste hefted her baby up to her shoulder. "Up you get, love." The glint in her eye caused Hermione to start giggling.
"What's the matter?" Luna asked her. Then, seeing where her mother was sitting down, as well as the removal of a certain garment, she realized. "Oh, no. No, no, no, no."
Celeste distracted Luna with her fingers, to get past her fussing, then grinned when she latched on. The initial grimace Luna had on her face changed to wide eyes that looked up at her. The look of astonishment was amusing, as was the slight shrug before her baby closed her eyes and settled in.
Hermione's giggles increased when she heard, "Wait! No! This is Wrong! I … Hold on … Yummy! Oh well."
Looking over to the quietly shaking toddler, Celeste grinned. "Everything okay over there?"
Turning on her side, Hermione felt Harry clamp himself to her back. "We celebrated her forty fourth birthday a few months ago," she whispered. "What you're doing now had her in a fit until she tasted the milk. She's resigned to it, but the situation is completely uncomfortable. Fortunately, I have teeth and can eat solid food."
Celeste smirked and continued rubbing her thumb over Luna's head as she rocked in the chair. "Always drawbacks," she mused. Looking down, she stifled her own giggles. "Don't worry, love. Just a few more months. Should be easy to get you on the bottle, though. You think?"
The light nodding at her breast amused both of them.
A/N: The Fideles Charm Translation.
Defendat Omnes A Nocentibus, Maneant Illi Intus Occulti, Averte Volentibus Nocentibus, Hoc Loco Oblivioni, Abscondere Intra Animam _, Occultum Fideles Permanere Licet Eis.
Protect all from harm, Let those inside remain unseen, Turn away those who wish harm, Let this place become forgotten, Hide the secret within the soul of _, May (s)he remain faithful to the secret.