Harry goes on a rant. Tonk is there to put him in his place.
Harry hung his head while Tonks and his uncle bickered back and forth about whose fault it was. The more the argued the louder it got. After about 15 minutes Vernon insinuated Tonks’ ability to walk up to a unicorn, she grabbed Harry and marched him up to his room. Harry was now in a whirlwind. Clothes and his belonging were flying into his trunk.
Harry stood still for a moment then his brain switch on, “Where are you taking me Tonks?”
“You’re leaving this place, Harry”
That great Tonks, but I don’t want to go,” Harry’s words stuck in his throat. He suddenly did not want to say that address as memories of Sirius went through his mind. He was able to croak out, “that place.”
Tonks stopped packing and turned to Harry with a look of sympathy, “Don’t worry Harry. You’re going to a safer place. Also those sacks of flesh down stair won’t touch you again, if I have my say and I do!”
Harry started to swallow the huge lump in his throat. Somehow he was able to whisper out, "thanks.” Tonks grabbed him in a crushing hug. Harry embraced her back and smiled. He realized he had a new comrade that would do anything for him.
Tonks wiped her eyes and let go of Harry, "Come on. You are leaving."
Harry looked confused, "Where are we going?"
"I am taking you to my home," Tonks replied.
A blush crept across Harry's face. He stammered, "Your home?"
Tonks saw the blush on the boys face. A seductive grin appeared on her face, "Yes Harry.” She moved close to his ear and made sure he could feel her breath on his neck. She whispered, "I am taking you to my place to take advantage of you.” She watched as his eyes got wide and he stood stammering with the reddest look on his face. Tonks loved the young boy’s reaction. She finally let him off the hook of sorts. A facade of anger flashed across her face, "Harry Potter! Do you think of me as a scarlet woman?"
Tonks did not think Harry's eyes could get any wider. He was rooted to one spot, his hands by his side. The only noise coming out of his mouth was unintelligible stammering. Tonks could not stop herself. She doubled over, her face red from laughing her head off. Harry at first looked confused at the out of control woman now rolling on the floor. Then his face scrunched up in frustration because he realized he was fooled.
"Ha Ha," Harry said very nasal, "Very funny Tonks."
"I am sorry Harry," She said trough the guffaws, "I could not resist. You looked so cute.” She finally stopped enough to stand and look in his eyes with a grin she continued, "besides, I just said you’re my lil' brother. Kissing my brother? BLEGH!"
Tonks grabbed the trunk, and took a small tampon package out of her pocket. She held it out to Harry. Harry looked at her worried, "Really I think I'll pass."
Tonks rolled her eyes, "Harry I'm not giving it to you," she said in frustration, "This is my personal emergency port key. I use this item because if I leave it out no one will accidentally nip it."
Harry smiled at the odd reasoning of his friend. He tentatively reached out and touched the wrapper. His finger felt like it was fused to the feminine product. He felt the familiar tug in the back of his navel as the world around him swirled into a rainbow of light and colors. Even though Harry was used to this type of travel, after the tournament it still made him nervous. With a thud, they both landed on a hard wood floor. Harry shook his head trying to get a bearing on his surroundings.
They were in a large living room. At first Harry thought he was in Ron's room. There were Quidditch posters on the walls and the place had clothes strewn from one end to the other. The only difference was the color of the walls. Instead of day glow orange it was a sky blue. There were white clouds that moved in the same direction as wind outside. There were also movie and music posters of all sorts from Star Wars to The Kinks. The furniture was soft and welcoming. It seemed a little messy with cloths strewn about but not dirty. Tonks absently took off her cloak and tossed it on the couch. "Sit down Harry stay a while."
Harry looked at her confused. Tonks smiled shyly, "This is my apartment. Does it meet your approval?” She looked at him expectantly.
Harry smiled, "I love it. The place reminds me of Ron's room."
Harry wanted to say all the clothes on the furniture but he responded with a second thought, "The Quidditch posters on the wall. How big of a fan are you?"
Tonks was about to answer when a shout came from the fireplace. "Nymphadora!” The two spun to face a very red faced Remus' head floating in the middle of the green flames. "You were supposed to be watching" just then he noticed Harry standing next to Tonks, "Harry! You’re here!” His face changed from anger to surprised and then to anger. "You two! Don't move!” With this his head disappeared from the fire. In the same instant, before the two could react there was a loud "crack on the other side of the front door. A violent pounding was emanating from the entrance. Tonks whipped out her wand and gave Harry a look of stay back.
She quietly reached across and pulled open the door. She stood half behind the door using it as a shield. Her wand trained on the person in mid swing to pound on the door. She peaked from behind the door to see a still very angry Remus.
"Nymphadora Tonks!” Remus ranted, "Who did you think would be at the door?” As he stepped into the apartment, "What is Harry doing here?"
Tonks stood her ground, "Harry is staying here."
"Harry is staying here?! He retorted incredulously, "Who was the brain genius who thought out this one?"
"On my authority he is staying here."
Remus had a vein in the middle of his forehead throbbing as he continued, "On your authority he is staying here?"
Tonks smirked, "You know if you repeat everything I say this conversation will take all night."
Remus took a deep breath and held it for a pregnant moment, "At least Dumbledore knows right?” Tonks opened her mouth to retort, and immediately pursed her lips in embarrassment. Remus' eyes lit up like he just got a permanent Wolfsbane potion. An arrogant smile spread across his face, "Tonks, you wait right here. I am coming back with Dumbledore.” Remus took this moment of shocked silence from both of them to take his leave. Over his shoulder he called to Harry, "don’t unpack!” That word still hung in the air after the door slammed and a crack was heard outside as he apparated away.
Tonks looked worriedly at Harry, "I am sure Dumbledore will decide not to place you back the Dursley's."
For Harry that was the last straw. He had stood back quietly while Tonks and Professor Lupin talked about him in the third person. Tonks confirmed the fact that Harry still was not in control of his life. This infuriated him. Harry broke the tense silence, "When is it my decision?"
Tonks tilted her head and with a small smile started, "Harry you are just…”
"Too young?” Harry interjected. Harry's eyebrows were raised and his lips pursed in anger, "was that what you were going to say?"
"Well" Tonks started quietly.
Harry cut her off, "You already told me I'm your little brother.” Tonks expression was changing from shock to hurt as Harry continued to rant. "Great, now I have more family for me to worry about. Now I've been put into a place I never asked to be and before I can even get used to being here I'm about to be forced out again. Thanks Nymphadora! I love my summer this year."
Harry was so wrapped up wallowing in his own self-pity; he did not notice Tonks' face change from hurt to angry. Harry finally noticed as he looked down the shaft of her wand, crossing his eyes since it was so close to his face. Tonks was standing face to face with Harry. Her light colored wand trained at his chin. The irises of her eyes had turned jet black and he was afraid to even ask her what that meant.
Before Harry could react Tonks yelled "Scourgify!” The caked-on blood on his face and neck quickly lifted off his face and twisted into small powdered dark red vortex before it disappeared.
Harry tentatively touched his face, feeling it clean and smooth once more. He would have been relived that Tonks put away her wand but her face did not change and her eyes still glowed ominous dark ebony light. He nervously started, "Thanks Tonks…”
"Oh so now it's Tonks again. Eh Potter?" The quietness of her voice sent danger signals to his brain. "No it didn't look good to have your face stained with blood and I just could not do this to a person that looked all beat up already."
Harry would have been impressed at the lightning reflexes of Tonks if he did not hear the sharp ‘SMACK' of Tonks' palm making contact with his cheek. Harry instinctively turned his face to try and deflect some of the force of the slap from his face but it had no effect. By the time Harry reacted, needles of pain were shooting through his face as he staggered back and somehow found the plush recliner with the back of his knees before he fell into it in a shocked and stunned heap. Tonks followed as he crumpled into the chair, never letting the space between them get greater than two feet.
Harry clutched his face in shock as Tonks grabbed his chin and forced him to look her in the eyes, "That was to get your attention!" She snarled in a very low and menacing voice.
Harry just sat, still shocked in silence, his hands clutching either side of his head. "I had to do something before you really got on a roll and said something that would make you stop our friendship." Tonks' expression changed back to hurt and her irises turned to a more normal pale blue. "Fine Harry, if you don’t want to stay here and have me as a big sister, I will say good bye now. Dumbledore will be here any minute to take your leave of me."
Harry snapped out of his shock as he caught a glimpse of Tonks disappear into the kitchen and projected his voice across the room, "I did not mean what I said Tonks." He hoped she didn’t hear the slight quiver of hurt in his voice as he tried to blink back the tears of both pain and hurt that threatened his self control.
"If you did not mean it you would not have said it." The shaky voice emanated from the kitchen. Harry took heart that she sounded as shook up and hurt as he himself felt.
Harry slowly stood from the couch, "Like you said I was on a roll and was not completely hearing what I was saying. It just came out all wrong." He huffed in frustration at his relatives and their neglect that had left him so clueless when it came to interpersonal relationships.
"Thank you so much for the recap on our last conversation." Harry stood dumb struck, unsure what to say to make it all better. The tension was suddenly interrupted by a knock at the front door.
From the kitchen in a formal voice, but shaky voice called out, "Mr. Potter, please invite Albus and Remus into my home."
Harry was about to retort but he realized this was a command not to be debated. Harry let out a sigh in frustration and let Dumbledore into the apartment. Remus was close on his heels with a smug look on his face. "Good afternoon Harry," Dumbledore said mildly, as he entered the suddenly much smaller feeling apartment.
At this moment Tonks made her appearance from the kitchen. She had a smile on her face, but Harry could tell that it was only a front. Her eyes were red and puffy and it looked as if she had scrubbed her face to get rid of tear marks. She looked up and when she saw the look of concern on Harry's face she quickly placed her hands over her eyes in concentration. When her hands came down, her eyes showed their normal shade and her face showed no hint that she had been crying in the kitchen. "Albus, so nice to see you," as she reached for his hand in welcome, "What brings you to my simple home?"
Remus immediately crossed his arms in anger, "Nymphadora," He interrupted Dumbledore as the older wizard started to speak, "you know damn well why we are here!"
Tonks was about to square off with Remus. Who cares if there was a youth or a superior in the room? The only thing keeping the two from creating 'Wizard Royal 1' in Tonks' apartment at that moment was a quiet word from Albus.
"Tonks," he started quietly as he ushered the group to the living room, "Let us have a seat please. We will discuss why Remus is being so ungentlemanly in your own home."
Remus gasped in anger while Tonks smirked in satisfaction as they all took their seats in the living room. Dumbledore settled himself in the large recliner that Harry had been in a moment before, relaxed and waiting for the rest to be seated. Remus sat on the couch facing Dumbledore, leaning forward with his elbows on his knees anticipation the dressing down that Tonks was sure to receive soon. Tonks sat at the far end of the couch as far away as possible from Remus while Harry sat lightly on the edge in the middle, ready to bolt at any moment in case Tonks wanted to attack either himself or Remus. Neither Remus nor Tonks were going to start the conversation. The silence was deafening before Dumbledore broke it.
"Harry," Dumbledore startled the young man by starting with him, "How are you doing today?"
Harry lowered his head, "Um," Was all he got out when Tonks took over the conversation.
"He is not doing very well Albus. I am concerned after Dudley got finished with him whether or not he and Hermione will be able to have kids." Dumbledore's eyebrows raised as both Remus and Harry jumped to their feet exclaiming.
"What?” But they said this for two different reasons. Remus did not know of the attack on Harry, while Harry was shocked and embarrassed for Tonks’ assuming he had some sort of relationship with his best friend. Tonks knew this straight away and looked pleased at the uproar her comment had caused.
Tonks looked both of them in the face as she addressed their outbursts. "Yes Remus," Tonks said sarcastically, making Remus bristle, "Harry had been the victim of a Dockers boot to the groin thanks to his oaf of a cousin, and he put his whole massive weight into it too." She then turned to Harry, "Please don't insult my intelligence, Mr. Potter." She shot a warning look to Remus not to say anything. Remus reconsidered his pithy retort, "We all know you love Hermione. When are you going to prove you have a pair and snog her brains out?"
Harry was dumb struck from shock and the embarrassment of Tonks' blatant statement about the feelings he thought he had kept hidden from everyone, even himself. Fortunately Remus took this time to ask some questions about the assault. He turned to Tonks, "That whale of a cousin hit Harry?"
Tonks rolled her eyes, "That is one way of saying it." Remus glared as she continued, "Another way of saying it is that Harry was bludgeoned to shit leaving him broken and on the verge massive internal damages. Sorry Albus."
Dumbledore chuckled, "I might be from the Victorian era, Tonks, but that does not mean I am emotionally assassinated when someone utters an expletive."
A blush crept across Tonks' face. She ducked her head, "OK, Albus."
"As for Harry staying here," Albus said turning to Harry, "I think that...
"That Harry," Remus interrupted, "would be...
Albus reasserted, "Would be fine to stay here. Depending on what how Tonks feels about a young man staying with her."
Remus put his fist on his hips in frustration. Tonks gave Remus a smirk showing him, 'I told you so.' She then turned to Harry with apprehension "I don't think he wants to stay here Albus."
Harry spoke up at this moment, "No, I would like to stay," and gave Tonks an apologetic smile.
The old wizard addressed Harry again, "In that case you have three choices. Go back and stay with the Dursley's." This suggestion made all in the room grimace. "You could go and stay at 12 Grimauld Place." This suggestion made Remus raise his eyebrows and nod emphatically, "Or stay here with Tonks."
Harry was about to give his answer when Remus interjected, "Albus, with all due respect. How can you feel comfortable with letting Harry stay here? I mean Tonks is...”
Remus did not finish as Tonks moved face to face with Remus, standing on tiptoes to put her nose to nose with the taller werewolf. "And why is it so bad for Harry to stay with me?"
Remus stammered, "Because you are... and he is...”
"I am what?" Tonks started punctuating each syllable she said by poking Remus in the chest with her index finger. "What is so bad with Harry staying here?"
Albus rolled his eyes and escorted Harry from the apartment, but Remus and Tonks did not seem to notice them leaving. Once they were outside Dumbledore took out a small red leather pouch and offered Harry a lemon sherbet before saying. "I will leave Tonks to convince Remus this is the best course of action, "as he gave Harry a small wink with a glittering twinkle in his bright blue eyes.” But I would like to know if you would like to stay here."
The smile that was forming on Harry's face immediately vanished, "I had said some rude things to Tonks right before you came." His eyes never reached the headmasters gaze as he studied his suddenly very interesting trainers.
"Is that why she was crying when Remus and I came in?" Harry only nodded as Albus continued, "Then Remus is not the only one in the dog house?" As he tilted his head toward the sound of Tonks berating Remus inside, he studied the contrite teenager standing before him.
Harry swallowed nervously imagining the wrath of Tonks after the Headmaster and Professor Lupin leave. He looked up nervously at his Headmaster, "Too late to back out of staying here?" He finally looked up to hopefully meet the twinkling blue eyes of the elderly wizard before him.
Albus gave a quiet chuckle before softly saying, "You don't have to stay here," Harry seemed to consider it, "but Tonks is placing her reputation and safety on the line for you."
The young man bit his lip in thought, "I need to stay and face her with the respect she deserves then."
Albus place a reassuring hand on his shoulder, "You are starting to understand about the right choice is not always the easy one. I am proud of you, Harry."
"Come," Albus turned toward the front door, "We need to let Remus off the hook."
"Couldn't we just let Tonks take it all out on Remus?" Harry said with a quiet smile, "That way she won’t have much left over for me?" Albus raised one eyebrow to Harry, "Yeah, she will have enough for me even after Remus is gone."