Disclaimer: The Harry Potter universe belongs to JK Rowling, Scholastic, Bloomsbury, Warner Bros and some other high falutin' companies. Me, I'm just a PR professional. I don't profess to own - and would never dream of making any money off - JKR's wonderful world. However, its her sandbox and she's left the gate unlatched so we can go in and play a bit. Which, I've done.


Chapter Twenty – Potter Holdings

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Exiting the lift back in the atrium, Harry asked, "Do you mind if we head for Diagon Alley for a little while? I need to get my eyes properly checked, now that my prescription has changed."

"Your - prescription?" asked Cygnus.

"Yeah, that's what the muggles call it," replied Harry. "Now that my eyesight isn't being adversely affected by the soul fragment I'd like to get them checked again and have my glasses replaced, if necessary."

Cygnus nodded and said, "If you think it necessary."

"I do, Cygnus," replied Harry. "Thank you."

After floo'ing to Diagon Alley, Harry led their small group to 'his' magical optometrist.

Entering, he saw the old man shopkeeper from before. "Hello, Sir," said Harry.

"Ah, Mister Potter," said the shopkeeper warmly. "I had read about your little incident during the Sorting. I take it your spectacles are no longer suitable?"

"Yes, Sir," replied Harry. "If you'd be so kind, I'd like to get my eyes checked once more and, possibly, new spectacles."

Indicating the same seat Harry had sat upon last time he said, "Take a seat then, Mister Potter."

Harry climbed into the seat and laid back while the other three stood back and watched.

After retrieving a small card of parchment from his small file cabinet, the old man came forward.

"Now, let's see," he waved his wand over Harry's eyes and compared what he discovered with what was on the card.

"Ah!" he said. "Completely normal eyesight with a very minor affliction of hypermetropia - far sightedness - which will not become a problem until you are older. That means, you will eventually need glasses for reading. Other than that, I can see you have a familial history of myopia - short sightedness - but you show no signs of it now. I dare say you will not suffer from it in the future.

"In a nutshell, Mister Potter, you do not require spectacles at this time. And, from my experience, you will not need spectacles for reading until your years are quite advanced."

"Thank you, Sir," said Harry. "However, I'd still like to be fitted for a pair of sunglasses with the same four charms I had on my prescripted pair you supplied previously. Plus, I'd like a pair of plain glass ones with the same four charms."

"You're worried about someone attempting to enter your mind, Mister Potter?" asked the shopkeeper.

"I am," replied Harry. "The - Headmaster - is a master Legilimens. I've felt both him and another member of staff attempting to read my surface thoughts over the past couple of weeks. I feel the attempts and they tend to give me a slight headache. I'd rather block them completely."

"Harry, Legilimency upon a minor, especially one of a Noble and Ancient House, is illegal," said Cygnus, concerned.

"I know," replied Harry. "However, passive Legilimency is wandless and there's no way to prove it. A master Legilimens merely needs to look you in the eye to carry it out."

Angrily, Cygnus said, "In that case, I want Daphne protected, as well."

The shopkeeper said, "I can fit you all with plain lenses in a very stylish frame, if you'd like. The charms I can place on the glass of the lenses will block everything up to a very forceful wanded cast."

Turning to Harry, Cygnus asked, "Harry, who is the other staff member you suspect?"

"Severus Snape," replied Harry. "I figured out the only way he could act as a spy for Dumbledore within the Death Eaters is if he's a master Occlumens. And, if he's a master Occlumens, it's no great stretch to also be a master Legilimens."

"Snape," growled Cygnus. Turning to his daughter, he asked, "Daphne, do you have a problem with wearing glasses while you speak with either the Headmaster or Professor Snape?"

"If either are attempting to read my mind?" asked Daphne, affronted. "Definitely not!"

"In that case," said the shopkeeper, "How about we peruse the shelves for something that suits?"

After an hour, Harry's two new pairs of glasses were ready. Daphne, and even Neville, had selected the pairs of glasses they wanted. Neville also went for a second pair, the same style mirror-surfaced sunglasses Harry had selected, but with a different base colour on the frame.

Because he'd done Harry's already, the shopkeeper was able to quickly cast the required Charms on the next three pairs; those for Daphne and Neville.

Though, Cygnus tried to get in first, Harry told the shopkeeper to take the payment for all five pairs from his personal accounts. When Cygnus tried to argue, Harry told him Daphne would soon enough be his responsibility, alone. He had no problem with purchasing for her an item of eyewear that would add to her protections. And Cygnus relented.

"As they left the store, Harry said, "There's just one more place to stop before we go,"

"Oh?" asked Cygnus.

With a nod, Harry said, "It was Hermione's birthday last Thursday. None of us knew of it as she hadn't said anything to any of us. However, Padma Patil heard it from her sister, Parvati, and told me in confidence last night in the common room. So, I want to buy her a birthday present before we leave; even if it will be somewhat belated."

"I didn't know about Hermione's birthday," said Neville.

"Me, neither," said Daphne.

"I know," said Harry. "I was thinking of getting her something from all of us, and people can chip in what they can afford."

"And what were you thinking of getting her?" asked Daphne.

"A post owl for her parents," replied Harry. "Dead useful; and it'll allow her parents to be able to send her letters and packages without having to come in to here to send them via the Post Owl Office."

"That's - actually a very smart gift, Harry," said Daphne.

"Indeed, it is!" said Cygnus. "And this time, you'll let us help pay for it."

After visiting the Owl Emporium Daphne selected the owl, a Long-eared Owl that had brown and tawny colouring with black 'streaks'. The shopkeeper said it was a male and rather large for the breed, standing at about 14 inches in height. When asked about it's range, he said it was built for long distance travelling, so could easily fly from one end of the isles to the other.

"It's perfect," said Harry. "As it's considered a native and not a threatened species, no one will go running off to British Wildlife to tattle if they see the Grangers have one roosting in their yard."

Turning to the shopkeeper, he said, "We'll take it. Plus, we also need: an indoor portable roost, a bag of owl treats, a small book on taking care of them, and package the whole lot up into a shrunk parcel."

"Easy enough to do," said the shopkeeper.

"And, can I also borrow a sheet of parchment, a quill and some ink?" asked Harry. "I need to let the receiver know the owl is a gift to them."

With a nod, the shopkeeper disappeared for a few moments to bring back the required writing implements.

Harry, Daphne and Neville then set about writing the letter to the Grangers. Harry remembered their address as he saw it written on the inside cover of one of Hermione's books she brought from home.

Within twenty minutes, Harry carried the owl outside with the parcel and letter attached before launching it into the air above the Alley.

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When Harry, Daphne and Neville returned to the castle later that afternoon, they each wore their new spectacles. Cygnus saw them floo'ed away from Diagon Alley before leaving directly for Greengrass Estate.

When Daphne was concerned they detracted from her looks, Harry gently leaned forward and, for the first time, kissed her. "Not to me, they don't," he softly said.

Daphne, at first shocked, blushed and leaned forward before saying, "If I was any older, Mister Potter, that comment would have earned you a decent snogging."

"Oh?" asked Harry. "And did you have anyone in mind to award me that decent snogging?"

Daphne grinned back and smacked him on the arm. "Prat!" she exclaimed.

Neville, sporting his new 'shades', chuckled. "You're a brave man, Mister Potter."

"Ah!" replied Harry. "But, thanks to our fathers, I already have the delectable Miss Greengrass firmly in my clutches. Mwa ha ha!"

Neville laughed while Harry earned another smack to his arm from Daphne.

As they entered the main doors of the castle they were greeted by Dumbledore, himself.

"I take it you have successfully concluded your business?" he asked with his twinkle running full bore.

"Yes, thank you, Headmaster," replied Harry.

"And might I enquire what that business was?" asked the old man.

"You may, Headmaster," replied Harry. "But, as it was family business, it is none of your business."

"I am the Headmaster of this school, Mister Potter," said the Headmaster sternly. His twinkle now absent. "It is my responsibility to know what my students are up to when they leave the grounds."

"And, I told you, Headmaster," replied Harry, coolly, leading the other two past and onto the stairs. "It was family business. You need not know anything else."

A clearly upset Dumbledore frowned mightily in response before storming off towards his office.

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Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore, Grand Sorcerer, Headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Holder of the Order of Merlin First Class, ex-Chief Warlock of the Wizengamot, ex-Supreme Mugwump of the International Confederation of Wizards, was a man unused to being so thoroughly sidelined. However, he also knew it was no one's fault but his own.

In the past two weeks his grand plan for the Greater Good of the Wizarding World had been reduced to a shambles, he had lost almost all of his political power, his popularity was in ruin, his staff now questioned him over his actions; but, more importantly, young Harry Potter was well and truly outside of his control. With the arrest and charges laid against his maternal aunt and uncle, the protections placed on the boy through the blood wards over Privett Drive were weakening daily. And the boy could not be forced to return there to restrengthen them. After the trial of the Dursleys in Courtroom Five he wouldn't have sent the boy back to them, anyway.

He knew the preceding ten years were going to be dark days for the boy, what with the aunt's hatred for magic; and, he expected the boy to come to school grateful to be out from under the roof of the Dursleys for at least part of the year; but, he had no idea it would be as bad for him as it clearly was. He also realised the boy was right when he said it was his fault it was bad, because he didn't find the time to go and check on his charge. And now the boy clearly - and for good reason - hated him for it.

With a sigh Dumbledore grasped a pinch of floo powder from his pot of it on the mantle above his fireplace. He tossed it in and called, "Potions Master's Office, Hogwarts." As the flames turned green he stuck his head within and called, "Severus."

Snape, who was sitting at his personal potions workstation at the time of the call, cast a Time Suspension Charm over the workstation before turning around to look at his fireplace. "What is it, Headmaster? I'm in the middle of brewing a new batch of Homesickness Cure Infusion for Pomfrey."

"Come to my office, please," replied Dumbledore. "We need to talk."

With a grumbling sigh, Snape rose from his workstation and said, "I shall be there, momentarily, Headmaster." He first placed another, longer, Time Suspension Charm over his entire workstation before turning to the door and striding out.

A few minutes later he was striding into the Headmaster's office.

"You wanted to see me, Headmaster?" he asked the old man.

"Ah, Severus," replied Dumbledore. "Please, take a seat. We have much to discuss."

Covering his own sigh of frustration, the Potions Master took seat on the other side of Dumbledore's desk.

"How well have you gained the confidence of young Miss Greengrass?" asked Dumbledore, once Snape was properly seated.

"Not one jot of an iota, Albus," replied Snape. "You know that."

"It is imperative you regain her trust, Severus," said Dumbledore. "She is the key to regaining the trust of young Mister Potter."

"Albus, it is difficult to regain something I never had in the first place," replied Snape with a sour look. "How do you propose I do what you ask?"

Dumbledore gave a dismissive wave before replying, "I'm sure you'll find a way, Severus. Our plan depends on it."

"Your plan, Headmaster," replied Snape. "Not mine."

"We must regain young Harry's trust," said Dumbledore ignoring Snape's response. "The future of the wizarding world depends on it."

"Headmaster, I fear you're flogging a dead horse," replied Snape. "Your plans will have to continue apace, without the participation of the Potter brat."

"Alas, they cannot, Severus," replied Dumbledore with a sigh. "Harry Potter is the key to everything. His destiny is to face Tom. Mine is to guide him to that point in time."

"I know the prophecy is everything to you, Headmaster," said Snape carefully. "But, I do not recall there being a part for you to play within it."

"The prophecy was told to me," replied Dumbledore. "It was told to me so that I may guide young Harry."

"Perhaps it was told to you so you can train the boy, Headmaster," said Snape. "You've done nothing towards that these past eleven years."

"Harry needs to enjoy his childhood," said Dumbledore with another throwaway gesture. "There will be plenty of time for him to receive training."

"Better to be trained early and before needed, than too late and not be ready," replied Snape.

"Do not question me on this, Severus," frowned Dumbledore. "I will know when it is time."

Moving to rise, Snape said, "Then, if there is nothing else, Headmaster; I have potions under a Time Suspension Charm to which I need to return before the Charm ends."

"Very well," sighed Dumbledore. "You may go."

With cloak billowing, Snape left the office to return to his potions.

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Sunday, glorious Sunday. If he hadn't planned on meeting Daphne and heading to breakfast together Harry would have gladly had the day as a lie-in. But, future wives wait for no man - or boy.

After his morning ablutions Harry ducked straight down to the Great Hall. Surprisingly, he met Daphne just as she was coming up from the dungeons with Tracey.

"Good morning, dear heart," he said. Then, with only a slight hesitation, said, "And you, too, Daphne."

Both looked gobsmacked at him standing there grinning at the pair of them for a few moments before Tracey burst into laughter. Daphne, as usual, hit him on the arm. "Prat!" she said, blushing.

"Good one, Potter," said Tracey still chuckling. "You had me going there."

"You know, Daphne," said Harry wincing slightly as he massaged his arm. "If you keep hitting me like that you're going to leave a permanent mark."

"Garbage!" she stated. "I'm not hitting you anywhere near hard enough for that yet."

Harry looked over to see she was smirking just slightly with her nose, just right, in the air. "Yet?" he asked.

"Yet!" she replied defiantly.

Harry gave a dramatic sigh and said, "Not yet married; and already beaten into submission."

As they were approaching the Ravenclaw table, their chosen destination for the morning, Tracey said, "Face it, Potter. You may be destined to be the Lord of the land, but Daphne will be the Lady of the manor."

Helping them to their seats, Harry asked, "Manor? Does that mean I have to buy one of those?"

Daphne looked at him a little shocked before she said, "Harry, you're a Potter. You already have one in Wales somewhere. I daresay you also have other properties scattered around the world."

"Oh," said Harry a little surprised while sitting down. "I guess I should take a closer look at that large folio the goblins gave me to read, then."

"You don't know?" asked Tracey.

Harry shrugged as he reached to load his plate, "I know I've got a fair bit of money; and that there's a whole pile of stocks; but I've not taken the time to go through it all."

Daphne set her knife and fork down and glared at him. "Harry James Potter. You are the Head of a Noble and Most Ancient House. It is your responsibility to keep on top of your finances. Honestly, Harry."

"Well," said Harry. "Do you know your way around those documents, then? Can you help me?"

"I'm the Heir Presumptive of a Noble and Most Ancient House," replied Daphne with a scowl. "And, as we're going to be married, and to which Tracey alluded, I'm destined to be Lady Potter. It's my responsibility to both Houses to learn as much as I can about the finances so I may aid you.

"Father has taught me quite a lot over the past few years so I will be ready when the time comes. So, yes; I will help you go through the documents."

"Thank you," said Harry quite gratefully. "I've read through a lot of it but I've not been taught business. It's not something they taught to Primary school children in Surrey. You'd be doing me a favour to help me there."

"No," replied Daphne. "As the Potter fortune will fall to us both once we are married, it is only right I ensure you don't do something stupid and lose it all before we even give our vows in the Bonding Ceremony. I need to protect my assets."

"But, still, you don't have to," said Harry, buttering a piece of toast. "I'm grateful."

After breakfast, Harry dashed up to the Ravenclaw tower and collected the folio he received from the goblins. He loaded it, and a sheaf of parchment, some ink and a couple of quills, into his bookbag before returning to the Great Hall.

The others were all waiting for him.

"Oh, Hi," he said. "You're all helping?"

"We volunteered," said Neville. "Like Daphne, we all, except for Hermione, have received instruction in managing the House finances."

"And my Dad's taught me about the London Stock Exchange and the 'Footsie'," said Hermione.

"The what?" asked Harry, before anyone could jump in. He had his bookbag on the table, had drawn out the large folio, and handed it to Daphne.

"The 'Footsie' - the F.T.S.E. - Financial Times Stock Exchange," explained Hermione. "The 'Footsie' is a selection of indexes that measure how the London Stock Exchange is performing overall. As such, it is a quick guide to whether the stock exchange is losing or gaining money."

"Oh-kay!" said Harry. "I thought it was a new dance move, or something."

"Honestly, Harry," huffed Hermione. "Why on earth would I be talking about a new dance move when I was talking about the London Stock Exchange?"

"I have no idea," laughed Harry. "That's why I was confused."

Daphne had remained quiet and was going through the folio slowly separating what was contained within into smaller piles.

"Alright," she said. "From what I can see, so far, your father was really busy managing investments in the year leading up to October 1981..." She suddenly stopped talking and looked at Harry. "Sorry," she said.

"No, it's alright," said Harry soothingly. "I've come to grips with their deaths now."

Nodding, Daphne looked back down to what she was reading. "Your father was busy managing investments until - that time - Clearly, he was making good use of the time they were in hiding.

"According to this," she said, tapping the sheet in front of her, "he made quite a few significant movements of funds from out of the wizarding world into the muggle world stock exchanges. From this, it is clear he believed the wizarding economy was either in the process of collapsing, or would soon collapse. However, he made the movements over a period of about a year. Never too much at one time."

Reaching across to one of the piles, she handed it to Hermione, "These are the stocks he purchased in the muggle world during that time and just before. As well as the existing stocks he owned at the time."

Hermione eagerly accepted the pile and started going through it. But, before she went too far, she reached into Harry's bag and snagged for herself a couple sheets of parchment, ink and a quill. Soon, she was writing down columns of information.

"However," said Daphne, "He didn't only choose stocks in the muggle world. He didn't abandon the wizarding economy, completely. He also purchased and sold stocks and business interests in the wizarding world. These are what he purchased here and abroad."

She passed that large stack off to Neville. He split it between himself, Hannah and Susan. Together, they also snagged some parchment and a quill. They shared ink with Hermione.

"He also divested himself of a lot of monetary bonds and bought overseas currency," she said, passing a pile to Tracey.

"And, finally, he purchased a great deal of overseas and local commercial property," moving the pile closer to herself.

"These last few pages are a financial summary of your total holdings," she said, passing the remainder to Harry. "You need to acquaint yourself with that."

Curious, Harry picked up the sheets of parchment Daphne had passed to him. He didn't see them when he was going through the folio. That's when he realised they were on the bottom. That surprised him as the muggles liked to keep that sort of information on top, so it was both easy to find and explained the rest.

From what Harry read the Potter fortune was staggering in it's size. His view of the vaults the first day he visited Gringotts, and the gold within, represented only a tiny fraction of the Potter wealth. Nearly all of it was invested in either stocks, property or businesses both home and abroad.

Alright," said Harry eventually, feeling a little woozy. "Alright. This - is incredible."

Nodding, Daphne said, "Alright. Let's hear it. Hermione; you want to go first?"

After the group had sifted through all the information before them, Hermione was almost jumping in her seat in excitement.

"Harry's right. This is incredible." Looking to Harry, she said, "Your father was clearly being advised by your mother and others who knew the muggle world really well. He made a few really good stock purchases; and a couple of absolutely brilliant ones.

"Firstly, whoever advised him to invest in both Microsoft and Apple Computers did really well for the Potter family. I won't know how well until I can get my Dad to send me a copy of the Financial Times, but the returns are constant and profitable from Apple Computers and are surging really well from Microsoft. You want to keep both of those, so don't let the goblins sell them on your behalf.

"There's also stock here for a couple of other telecommunications companies that are returning decent profits. One, however, you may want the goblins to divest you of. I've circled that one for you.

"Other than that, there's a few here that are what are called 'Blue Ribbon' companies. That means they will maintain steady and healthy returns unless something drastic happens, such as another global war.

"There's also a few start-ups he invested in that, I suspect, have since collapsed. But a few seem to be sustaining themselves for the moment.

"All in," she concluded, "this is a very good and diverse portfolio of muggle stocks that only requires a minor amount of tweaking. I'll be able to give you a better report once I get a copy of the Financial Times."

"Thank you, Hermione," said Daphne, before she turned to Neville and company. "Neville?"

With a nod in recognition, Neville explained, "James Potter was thinking long term here. He purchased a number of businesses that owned their own properties. So, if the business collapsed due to the war, he would still own the land on which the business sat. In some cases, the land and building was worth more than the business itself.

"Here in magical Britain, Harry now holds the deed to the land for a significant portion of Diagon Alley, Knockturn Alley, Hogsmeade, and McDonald Street in Inverness. He also holds the deed to the land for a few businesses in Rue de Magique in Paris, Assistenten Stabe in Berlin, and Brujas Manera in Madrid. A few others are scattered around in Magical Salem in the US, Magical Australia, and Magical Japan. All of them are returning a healthy and steady return."

Susan took over. "As for magical businesses Harry owns a moderate share in, the significant ones in Britain are: The Daily Prophet, twenty five percent; Flourish & Blotts, twenty five percent; The Leaky Cauldron, twelve and half percent; Quality Quidditch Supplies, ten percent; and Magical Menagerie, ten percent. They're all in Diagon Alley.

"In Knockturn Alley, you own a pub called the Warlock's Curse. And there's a note here we shouldn't have probably read that states the proprietor there, back in 1980 and 81, was providing intelligence to the Order via the goblins through a drop box.

"In Hogsmeade: You actually own the Shrieking Shack outright; Honeydukes, twenty percent; Gladrags, ten percent; Scrivenshaft's, ten percent; and Dervish and Banges, five percent.

"There are others but I'll let you go through this to decide for yourself what is and isn't important. However, none of the businesses are currently running at a loss. In all of the businesses you're currently acting as a silent partner. However, with the percentages you hold, you can become more active in a lot of them should you desire to do so."

Daphne gave a few nods before turning to Tracey. "Trace?" she asked.

"Harry owns quite a few bonds that can now be cashed out in a lot of the wizarding world's currency," replied Tracey. "They include: war bonds for the Galleon; and treasury bonds for France's Argent, Spain's Dinero, Germany's Geld, and the America's Franklin, to name a few. The sums are quite significant.

"The most telling is the war bonds. The Ministry effectively owes the Potters well over two million Galleons. If Harry was to cash in the lot in one fell swoop it would probably bankrupt the Ministry right there and then. I doubt they'd be able to pay it back, even though they're required to do it immediately."

"And that leaves me," said Daphne turning to her own stack. "As I've already mentioned, the Potters own a manor. It's in Merlin's Bridge, near Haverfordwest, Pembrokeshire, Wales. There's Potter's Cottage in Godric's Hollow, which was bought only about eighteen months before - you know - and which has been claimed by the Ministry as a place of historical interest, but nothing here that says they've legally purchased it. There's Lily's Pad, which sits above Scribbulus Everchanging Inks in Diagon Alley. And, the building known as the Shrieking Shack in Hogsmeade. That's all the ones in Magical Britain.

"Overseas, in Europe, there's a Chateau in France on the south coast near the town of Toulon called La Retraite De Potier - Potter's Retreat. And, peculiarly, a winter house in Australia on the east coast in the town of Byron Bay simply called - The Winter House.

"Those look like the private residences for the Potters. On top of those there's quite a few investment properties the Potters own that are rented out. All bar two are in the wizarding world. The two that are not are a house in Spinner's End near Weston-super-Mare; and a house in the township of Little Whinging in Surrey."

"Let me guess," sighed Harry. "The one in Little Whinging is rented out by a family by the name of Dursley?"

Daphne, a little surprised, rummaged through the property reports before she looked up and said, "Got it in one."

"When were the two places in the muggle world purchased?" asked Harry.

Daphne rummaged a bit more and said, "Both properties were acquired in - March 1978. According to this, Lily Evans purchased half of the property in Spinner's End off her sister after already owning half of it. They were co-owners on the death of her maternal mother. A week earlier, James Potter purchased the house in Little Whinging. The Dursley's have been the only tenants. Both purchases were handled by the same muggle law firm."

"And when was Lily's Pad purchased?" asked Harry.

Daphne flipped through the documents before replying, "June 1978."

Thinking, Harry said, "Alright. It looks like my maternal grandparent's, the Evanses, died shortly before March 1977. My Mum and Aunt Petunia were left their house as co-owners. The sisters did not want to own the house together, so it was organised for my Mum to buy off Aunt Petunia her share.

"My aunt and uncle married in May 1978. And they immediately moved into the house in Little Whinging that my father had purchased only a short time earlier. I wonder what the arrangement was there..."

"Harry, this means you were their landlord," said Daphne.

With a snort, Harry asked, "What are they paying in rent?"

"One - Pound - per month," replied Daphne. "Whatever that is."

"Current exchange rate holds at about Five Pounds per Galleon," replied Harry. "A British Pound is currently worth about three Sickles, eleven Knuts."

"That's all?" exclaimed Daphne.

She searched back through the documents and found a contract. Reading through it she said, "This is a contract on the property in Little Whinging. Here, it says the property is liened. In March 1997, Petunia Dursley nee Evans has first option on purchasing the property at it's original purchase price. The only stipulations is that it cannot be passed on to her heirs if she dies prior to March 1997, and that the condition of the property must be maintained in at least as good a condition as it was when first purchased."

"Well, God damn it!" growled Harry.

"What's wrong, Harry?" asked Daphne. "While it may mean there'll be a slight loss due to the loss of monies that could have been made from the monies invested in purchasing the property, you don't actually lose anything out of the arrangement other than interest which would have been gained on the original monies involved."

"I was the one who maintained the house for them," he growled. "I was the one who did all the chores around the house, including maintaining it in that good condition. Most of my chores were around things like painting the house each year, weeding the gardens, mowing the lawns, cleaning and repainting the paths, painting the interior door frames and walls; hell, I even rewallpapered the interior walls once.

"I was their landlord and owner of the house and they used me to meet the conditions of their stupid contract that would allow them to purchase the house from me at the original purchase price." He sighed and said, "I bet they were laughing to themselves over it, the whole time."

"Well, they're not laughing now," said Daphne. "And, if the house isn't being maintained, you can take it back off them. We'll just have to wait to see what the muggle legal system does to them first."

"I can't kick them out already?" he asked.

With a small shake of her head, she replied, "No. They've paid their rent, in advance, right up to March 1997."

"Damn!" replied Harry.

"Anyways," said Daphne in an attempt to change the subject. "We now know the House of Potter is in an excellent financial situation. There may be a few shares that need to be sold off, and maybe some more purchased; plus, the various personal properties around the world need to be checked over; but everything is otherwise in a good condition.

"I suggest, Harry," she said, looking straight at him, "we organise for a time to go to the properties and have a good look over them. These documents don't show if any of the properties are in stasis or not - though, I suspect they all are - but we need to check them, anyhow."

Harry nodded and said, "They've been like they are since October 1981, at least. I think they can wait until Christmas holidays. We may even be able to make an excursion of it."

"And, I think that's enough of the finances for now," said Daphne, indicating for everyone to pass her the paperwork. "You and I will need to just go for a walk and talk some time later. You're looking quite stressed."

After Daphne had reorganised all the paperwork, and placed them back in the folio, Harry collected all the spare parchment, ink and quills and pocketed the lot into his bookbag.

"Alright, then," he said. "Shall we adjourn to the library afterwards?"

"Library!" said Hermione. "We've a couple of hours before lunch. If we get homework out of the way, then lunch, we can help with getting the club ready."

"Any dissent?" asked Daphne.

No one disagreed, and they all rose from the table. Harry looked at his friends and said, "To you all; thank you very much for your help. I really appreciate it."

They all smiled back and Susan said, "That was actually a lot of fun."

As they were about to leave, Hermione asked, "Harry, can I borrow Hedwig?"

"Sure!" he said, before asking, "Why?"

"I want to send a letter to my Dad asking if he can forward on a copy of the Financial Times," she replied. "That way, we'll know just what all those shares in muggle businesses you own are worth."

Harry grinned and replied, "Sure, why not?"

The Seven made their way out of the Great Hall, to collect homework notes to recongregate in the library.

_‗_
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