Something in Harry changes that summer between fourth and fifth year. At his trial he discovers what someone has been hiding from him since he was born.
I do not own the Harry Potter universe nor anything related to the Harry Potter universe. If we did, I do not think that I would be struggling through college now. Any resemblance to ideas, names, thoughts, theories or situations in another story written on FFN is purely coincidental.
I would also like to state that this is an answer to a challenge put on by the last of the pendragons at FFN.
'The Mysterious Voice'
Harry Potter and the Lords Lament
When the lift opened Harry and Mr. Weasley stood in a dim hallway. Harry looked around as they walked. The walls were covered in black marble with interlocking white rings of marble laid in them. Lighting the walls were gas lamps at alternating intervals with a tapestry depicting Wizarding history. They stopped in front of the door at the end of the hallway.
'Why does this room not match any of the other hallways in the rest of the building?' Harry questioned himself to keep his mind off of the upcoming event.
“I am sorry Harry but I cannot go in there with you. It's for the safety of all those in attendance that those that are not involved with the cases and a few selected reporters are not allowed to attend.”
“Thank you Mr. Weasley.” As Mr. Weasley walked away Harry squared his shoulders and thought about all of the information on the Wizengamot that he had read in the last few days. Taking a deep breath he pushed lightly on the door. The doors slid open silently, revealing a packed court room. Half of the room was seating for the entire Wizengamot, among the armchairs, done in the House colors for the Families that sat there, were a scattering of empty chairs. Some chairs were draped in black, marking them as being a Family that has died out without naming a Successor. Still less chairs were draped with a white cloth with the word Proxy written across it, showing that the vote was being held in proxy by another voter. The other half of the room should have been the empty seats for spectators and news reporters, but instead there was a sea of teens, young adults and a handful of reporters. Among them Harry saw a few of his classmates including Neville and Draco Malfoy. He walked forward to the chair in the middle of the room. Harry nodded to those in the audience that he knew before sitting down.
The only chair in the open space was a high backed, hard wood spindly chair, which was built more to make someone uncomfortable enough to spill secrets just to get out of it, than to be a normal chair. Harry could see the chains lying idly at the bottom of the chair; just the threat of those chains being near him was enough to make him start to sweat. As he sat in the uncomfortable high backed defendants chair chains shot from the base and made to wrap around his arms. Harry shot from the chair and looked at the team of Aurors standing off to the side.
“I am not a danger to anyone. Why am I being restrained like a murderer?” Harry exclaimed.
“Because Mister Potter, you are in serious trouble.” An obese woman with a pink ruffle showing above her black robes, sitting in the Wizengamot's Administrative seats. 'Calling her a woman was probably more of a compliment than anything else, since she was oddly reminiscent of a toad.' Harry thought and then had to restrain a smile from showing on his face.
“Be that as it may, dear Lady, according to the Statute of Secrecy this is a level three offense and only a level one or a defendant that has already attempted an attack on the Governing body are to be wrapped in chains.” Fudge glowered before releasing the chains. Harry sat down and slid his bag to the floor beside him.
“Now begins the Expulsionary Hearing of Mister Harry Potter. Presiding judge today is Minister of Magic Cornelius Fudge, Court Scribe is Percy Weasley, Prosecution is Dolores Umbridge, Defendant is Harry Potter, and there is no defense council.” Percy said as he sat down. The doors suddenly banged open and in strolled Headmaster Dumbledore.
“Ladies and Gentlemen of the Wizengamot I, Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore, will be the defense's council.” Headmaster Dumbledore greeted everyone with a grandfatherly smile.
“Oh, I see that you got my letter about the changes in time and venue?” Fudge said playing it cool. He shuffled through some papers on the podium in front of him.
“No, but by a lucky coincidence I arrived at the Ministry three hours early today.” Dumbledore's eyes twinkled in the uncanny way that he normally used when he was trying to get people to go along with whatever plan he had concocted.
“Harry Potter is charged with two counts of using the Patronus Charm in front of a muggle.” Percy read from the docket in front of him. His eyes almost betrayed that he actually felt a bit of pity for Harry but, his job was to be the yes-man for Minister Fudge.
“Scribe, should there not be an attempted in front of those class two spells.” One of the older Wizengamot members asked with an air of snobbishness that meant, at least to Harry, that their decisions might already be made about him.
'It is going to take a miracle to get them on your side. They have always been a stodgy group of men and women. They might also hold it against you that you have not done anything towards rectifying certain mistakes.'
'What mistakes?' Harry questioned the little voice.
'I cannot tell you that at this moment. But rest assured if all works out today you will know about that which I am talking before the day is out.'
'Fine, but I expect some answers later. I do not like being left out in the dark on things.'
“Excuse me sir, that is one attempted and one successful cast of the Patronus Charm.” There was a murmur in the seats above him. “Opening Statements. Prosecution will go first. Ms. Umbridge if you please.”
“Ladies and Gentlemen of the Wizengamot, Mister Potter has a history of flaunting his magic in front of muggles. Shattering charms and an inflation charm on a person in the third year, a hovering charm in his second year and this summer alone two class two charms used in the presence of a muggle. Mister Potter has no respect for the Statute of Secrecy and therefore should not only be expelled from Hogwarts but also exiled from the Wizarding world.” She sat down with a smile on her face, knowing that there would be almost no way that he would be able to stay in their world after she was done with him.
“Defense asks that Madame Umbridge stick to the charges of the day and not bring up past misdeeds. Ladies and gentleman of the Wizengamot please begin your questioning.” Headmaster Dumbledore said with the grandfatherly smile that most of the room was quite familiar with.
“Mister Potter, do you have anything to say for yourself?” Minister Fudge said not wanting this trial to go for longer than it had to. The less he had to see Potter the better off that he would be in the long run.
“Yes sir, I am innocent of performing magic in front of a muggle that has always known about magic.”
“Scribe, who was the magic done in front of?” Dolores Umbridge barked at Percy.
“Squib A. Figg and muggle D. Dursley.” Percy said. He recognized both names and a flicker passed through his eyes but he remained quiet. Off to the side Percy wrote a few words on a piece of scrap parchment and then had it passed to Madame Bones as discreetly as possible.
“D. Dursley is my cousin Dudley. He is the son of Petunia Evans Dursley, sister of Lily Evans the wife of James Potter. I have been living with the Dursleys since a few hours after my parents were murdered. Headmaster Dumbledore brought me there himself, because they were my only living relatives. If my parents left a will it did not say where I was to go, since I have never heard of a will I am likely to believe that they did not have one.”
“Do you have any proof?” An older woman asked from the fourth row of seats.
“Squib A. Figg is here today to be the witness for the defense.” Professor Dumbledore said with a small glare at Harry for fielding the first few questions. Old Missus Figg was brought into the room, smelling of cabbage and cats, carrying a worn carpet bag.
“ Missus Figg are you a squib?” Minister Fudge asked as she was seated in the witness' chair.
“Yes sir. I am.”
“Did you witness Mister Potter's use of magic?”
“Yes, Madame Bones. A cold gust of wind blew by me when I was on my way home from the grocer. I sped up when I heard Dudley Dursley screaming.”
“What was Mister Potter doing to him?” Madame Umbridge said with a smirk for the witness playing right into her plans.
“Harry Potter was trying to get between the cold force and his cousin. He was casting the Patronus Charm so I can only guess it was a Dementor or a Lethifold.”
“You guess?” Madame Umbridge shrieked.
“Yes Madame. I may have been born to magic parents but I do not have the ability to see Lethifolds and Dementors. I helped Mister Potter take his cousin home and sneak back into their house.” Missus Figg smiled fondly at Harry as she spoke. She had always had a little bit of a soft spot for the boy.
“Thank you Missus Figg you are dismissed.” Minister Fudge directed Missus Figg out of the room again. “Mister Potter your witness stated that you used the Patronus Charm in the act of saving your cousin from a Dementor.”
“How would a Dementor get to Little Whinging, Surrey?” Minister Fudge asked, trying to get Harry to say something else that would incriminate him.
“I would not know Minister Fudge. I was under the impression after Sirius Black's escape from Azkaban that all of the Dementors obeyed the Ministry of Magic. I do not understand how a pair of them could have made it so far from the prison and wandered into my neighborhood. I do fear for my cousin and the rest of my muggle neighbors had I not been able to use the Patronus Charm properly.”
“Are you insinuating, Mister Potter, that a member of the Ministry was involved in the Dementors being in Surrey?” Madame Umbridge demanded the look on her face was one of almost pure hatred.
“No, Madame Umbridge. I am merely questioning the possibility of having Dementors that have escaped from the prison or have come here from another country.” Harry said defending himself from her onslaught, unconsciously Harry sunk back into the chair.
“Madame Umbridge, do not attack the integrity of Mister Potter. He has said nothing that is anti-Ministry.” One of the staffers that was sitting near Madame Bones said.
“I suggest an inquiry into the Dementors that visited Surrey. If they were indeed ordered I would like to see justice for the person that was either trying to get Mister Potter expelled or had the bright idea to send them after muggles?” A member of the Wizengamot said.
“Of course there will be an inquiry. I cannot have a member of the Ministry running around spreading discontent and discord.” Minister Fudge answered covering his backside and taking himself a little bit out of the line of fire. “Mister Potter you have also stated that you have lived with this cousin since your parents passed away.”
“Yes Minister.” Harry smiled to himself, there was a turn in the events of this trial that were finally going his way.
“Do you have proof that that you have lived there since you were young?” Madame Bones asked.
“No, Minister Fudge, due to security reasons...” Headmaster Dumbledore began, stepping in front of Harry.
“Actually Minister, I do.” Harry pulled a packet of papers from his bag on the floor. “These are copies of reports from Surrey Primary and my first Hogwarts Letter.” Harry handed them to the Auror that came closer to retrieve them.
“What is Surrey Primary and how does that mean anything to this court.” One of the older Wizengamot Gentlemen asked.
“Gracious Lords and Ladies of the Wizengamot. One of the benefits of living in the Muggle World is that once a child reaches the age of four they begin a publicly funded compulsory school. My Guardians registered me, albeit they were forced to, when they registered my cousin. These are official copies of the Muggle Bureau of Education documents. The first is mine, stating that I've lived with the Dursley family since I was one. The second is a report from the Bureau of Children from the Social Worker that was called when they refused to get a broken arm set.”
“Refused to do what to a broken arm?” Lady Seran questioned.
“Muggles cannot use a potion to fix a broken arm. They use a long process of setting the bones, then binding the area in lengths of linen before coating the linen with plaster. This allows the bones to fuse back together on their own. This takes a few months to complete.”
“That is painful, is it not?” Griselda Marchbanks asked leaning forward in her seat a bit.
“It is very painful, Ma'am. Although, the feeling of the bones fusing is not a painful as taking Skelegrow. Most muggles just feel an annoying itch that they cannot scratch because of the cast. They try to make the process as quick and as pain-free as possible.”
“Dreadfully Plebeian.” Lord Parkinson commented to his son. 'I didn't know that Pansy had an older brother. He looks only two or three years older than we are.'
“Aye, Lord Parkinson, but they do the best that they can with their limited resources.” Harry answered, trying to keep Dumbledore from being able to talk for him.
“Regardless, why did they not want to have your arm 'set'?” He asked taking a long puff off of his pipe, the smoke swirling around his head.
“Because they said it would cost too much money.”
“What did this treatment cost?” Lady Seran asked.
“Three hundred pounds, roughly sixty galleons. This included the multiple photos of my bones, doctors visits, the cast and the pain pills for the first few days.”
“What does this have to do with anything?” Madame Umbridge muttered.
“My first Hogwarts letter is here, stating that before the start of school this is the address that I was living at.” The Auror that had taken the letter from Harry handed it to Percy, who made a few notes before passing it on to Griselda Marchbanks.
“It is authentic and matches the address of the event in question, as well as all other past events.”
“I, Grand Lady Longbottom, move that a vote be taken and a verdict of innocent be rendered due to the Statute of Secrecy not applying since all witnesses to the 'crime' were blood relatives living under the same roof as Mister Potter for more than one year.” Lady Longbottom said while she stood, tapping her cane against her foot.
“There is still the charge of using magic over the summer holidays before being of age.” Dolores Umbridge jumped from her chair in protest.
“Madame Umbridge, according to the Decree for Underage Sorcery young witches and wizards are allowed to use magic in the case of a life threatening situation. For me having a Dementor trying to feed off the soul of my cousin is life threatening.” Harry answered.
“But not to your life. Just to a muggle. Hardly life threatening at all.”Umbridge said flapping her hand at him in dismissal.
“Be that as it may to some people Madame Umbridge, Dementors being anywhere near a person should be considered life threatening. That is the reason that we use them at Azkaban, is it not?” Lady Bones asked.
“All in favor of conviction?” Dolores Umbridge's arm shot into the air as if it were fired from a cannon before the words were fully out of Minister Fudge's mouth. Within three seconds a little less than one half of the hands in the room went up as well.
“All opposed?” The rest of the voting members of the Wizengamot raised their hands. On a whim Harry raised his hand as well.
“This is a highly unusual time Lord Potter.” Lady Bones, holder of one hereditary seat on the Wizengamot and the Director of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement.
“You cannot vote here Mister Potter, you waived your right to your heirship when you were eleven.” Lord Malfoy said rubbing his palm across the top of his cane.
“What do you mean...” Harry stammered.
“That is inconsequential. This vote is to ascertain whether or not Mister Potter may remain in the Magical World.” Headmaster Dumbledore interrupted.
“Albus Dumbledore, let the child speak.” Madame Marchbanks said tapping her cane on the floor.
“If it is of no problem to the court, I would like to question the court.” Harry said with a sad and confused smile on his face.
“Proceed Lord Potter.” Lady Bones said smiling at him.
“Three questions Lady Bones. Why is this an unusual time? I was under the impression that even if I did raise my hand to vote for my own innocence it would not be bothersome, considering that I am not of a Family enough old to be a part of the Wizengamot.” There was a gasp from most of the Old Families when this was said. The pieces started to fit together in the minds of Harry's classmates. “Two, what heirship or responsibilities would I have? And three, why did you call me Lord Potter?”
“You mean you did not know? Didn't your parents leave it in their wills, where they assigned you Aunt and Uncle as your Guardians. She should have told you if nothing else.”
'I knew it. Knew your father was not forgetful enough to not leave a will. Play the Orphan card. You have never seen any wills.'
'What good will that do?'
' Just do it. Trust me.'
“I did not know my parents even had a will written before they died.”
“Scribe, call forth the goblins of the wills department, the case review of Post War Orphans, and the Potter file. We will take a one hour break before proceeding.”
'Always, create an air of compassion with people in authority. Fudge seems like the kind of Minister that likes to have his ego inflated on a daily basis.'
“Minister Fudge, am I free to walk around the chamber to stretch my legs.” Harry asked the Minister.
“Feel free, please refrain from leaving the chamber though.” Minister Fudge smiled at Harry as he spoke.
“Thank you Sir.”
“Court is adjourned for one hour.” As the Wizengamot members got up to leave the room, Albus attempted to gather Harry to him.
“Harry, my dear boy, I think that we should talk.” Harry rolled his eyes as he turned around.
“About what Headmaster?”
“I do not think that you need to be reading your Parents' wills right now. There are so many other things at risk right now.” Behind him Harry saw his friends and a few classmates walking down the aisles toward him.
“Headmaster, none of that has anything to do with me. Now, Headmaster, I am going to socialize with my Social Peers.”
“No Harry, we need to talk.” Harry felt a brush against the edges of his mind.
“Headmaster. You are not my Guardian, nor do you have any influence in my life outside of the school building. Now kindly go bask in your glory before it fades.” Harry walked away to join his schoolmates that were gathering near the bottom of the Wizengamot seats. “Hello Neville, how was your summer?” Harry greeted his roommate.
“Very good Lord Potter. Allow me to introduce you to Lady Susan Bones, Lady Daphne Greengrass, Lady Millicent Bulstrode, and Lord Ernest MacMillian.” Noticing the snotty way in which his friend was introducing their schoolmates Harry went along with it, trying to imitate what Neville was doing as well as what the little voice was whispering in his ear. Harry inclined his head towards everyone in turn. “Ladies and Lord may I finally introduce you to Lord Potter, the deceived.”
“Good Morning Lord Potter.” They said in a well trained unison.
“Good Morning.” he replied.
“Lord Potter, have you really never heard your parents' wills?” Ernie asked, putting aside his dislike for Harry, believing that this would be a turning point for the young man in front of him.
“No, Lord McMillan. I didn't even know that they had a will until it was mentioned in here.” Harry said truthfully. He could tell by the looks on their faces, which they quickly covered, that they were all shocked.
“We all wondered why you were abandoned to live in a dirty hovel with the unkept muggles.” Daphne said the glint in her eyes and the tone of her voice betraying her feelings and upbringing about muggles.
“Lady Greengrass, I was placed there by Albus Dumbledore, one cannot be abandoned when those of 'respect' know exactly where you are.” Harry added sending a small jab at Dumbledore.
“Touche, Lord Potter.”
“How is everyone preparing for the year ahead.” Millicent Bulstrode said steering the topic away from homes. Home lives are never the best topic to discuss due to pressures that parents and Elders placed on young people in their positions. Milicent cut her eyes towards her grandfather. He was casually discussing something with a few Patriarchs of Ancient Families. She could tell that he was watching her, she needed to be on someone's good side before the war broke out again. Patriarch Bulstrode had told her not more than a month ago that he was being asked where the House's loyalties would lie if He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named returned. If Harry was breaking with Dumbledore there may be a safe third option for families living in the gray spectrum, neither light or dark.
“Its going to be a normal year, Lady Bulstrode, for me at least. I hope not to end up dead or in the hospital and -poof- it happens anyways.” Harry attempted a joke. “But in all seriousness I am actually looking forward to the OWLs at the end of the year.”
“Well its horrible occurrence every time you end up in the Hospital Wing. Although, it does give us some relief over the boredom of school trying to figure out when trouble will find you next.” Millicent said, trying to put a lighter spin on Harry's comment.
“Momma is already planning on my robes for the Christmas Debutante Ball.” Said Daphne trying to find a topic that wasn't going to lead to the discussion of Harry getting hurt or bad things happening.
“What Ball?” Harry's confusion showing on his face. Ernie's jaw dropped but he recovered quickly and smirked at Harry.
“Oh, Lord Potter, surely you've heard of the CDB, its the largest party of the season.” Daphne said covering her mouth with a kid glove covered hand.
“Let's just say that 'sheltered' is a misnomer.” With a grin Harry swiped his hair away from his face.
“The CDB is a 'first' Ball for all purebloods of status, selected mixed and half bloods and a few if any muggleborns.” Millicent explained like she was talking to a muggleborn that hadn't set foot in the wizarding world yet.
“Who decides just who gets to attend the Ball?” Harry asked.
“The Circle does of course.” Millicent said as if it was the most obvious thing in the world.
“Circle? Who is the Circle?” Harry asked feeling a little slow. He wondered why the voice, nor his mother's diary had not mentioned it yet.
“The Crone's Circle. A community of seven Matriarchs of the old families. Currently they are the Grand Ladies Longbottom, Greengrass, Malfoy, Lovett, Dawson, Chambord and Montriat. They use the dossiers on every fifteen year old magic user, whether at Hogwarts or abroad.” Daphne said with a smile.
“Don't forget the foreign born children of diplomats and old purebloods that moved to the continent during the war. And on top of having to be chosen by the Circle as an eligible person of interest, you have to be able to afford the Debut. ” Milicent added flipping her long brown hair over her shoulder with a practiced ease. “There should be plenty of beautiful Ladies and debonair Lords at this year's event. I would hazard a guess that this will be one of the bigger ones, only over shadowed by the next two years.”
“Afford?” Harry questioned.
“The clothes, the two days of events, the calling cards, and the accessories.” A flutter of pure happiness sparked across Daphne and Millicent's faces.
“I was wondering why the Weasley's never mentioned anything about it.”
“Because, they want you to depend on them and not know anything about Society that they don't tell you. You'll see in two months who gets invited. I doubt Ron will be. He has not made a good impression on the Circle.” Neville said. Suddenly his eyes bulged a little. Harry turned in time to see two goblins come into the court room carrying a giant case. Behind them were two armed goblin guards, and at the very back was a single goblin bearing a golden chest. Percy Weasley walked over to them and spoke quietly before waving his wands at the books and the chest. Neville leaned over the rail towards Harry.
“If they prove your heirship you need to demand your title and seat be available now to either you or an appointed regent.” Neville whispered.
“Thank you for the advice Neville. You really are an upstanding person and might I say friend?” Neville nodded his agreement to their friendship before returning to his seat next to his grandmother. The Wizengamot regained their seats as Minister Fudge and Dolores Umbridge entered again.
“This is the continuance of the trial of Harry James Potter, presumed Lord Potter. This session is to determine whether or not Mister Potter is able to gain his seat as Lord Potter, as well as his innocence to the charges of neglecting the Statute of Secrecy. Please take your seats.” Percy said, his glasses resting on the end of his nose. “Good members of the Wizengamot as Scribe, I have located the written letter from Mister Potter declaring his Regent and stating that he would not be claiming an Wizengamot seats or titles.” Percy passed the letter around the room. When it reached Harry he read it over before laughing.
'Not appropriate. Stop Laughing. Ask them how a two or three year old can write a letter.'
“Ladies and Gentlemen of the Wizengamot, unfortunately, you were misguided. I humbly ask you how a two and a half year old can write an eloquent letter such as this declaring in words that he probably cannot say let alone write that he does not want to be a member of this Governing Body. Also making statements about wanting to live a life devoid of responsibility. As well as the signature isn't mine.”
“But is the magical signature yours?”Grand Lady Longbottom asked.
“No Ma'am, this paper feels familiar but it is not mine.”
“Scribe, who filed said document?” A familiar voice questioned Percy. Standing near his chair, almost daring Draco to make a noise was Lucius Malfoy.
“It is written in the log that Albus Dumbledore entered the document into the record.” Percy said with a smile on his face.
“I wonder, doesn't Albus Dumbledore also vote the Potter proxy?”
“Aye, as well as the Malone, Hogwarts, each of the Founders, Prewett, Dobbs, Meadowes, McKinnon, Fenwick, Davin, his own and the Chief Wizard's.” Percy stated flipping through the book to the list of Proxies at the back. His face showing his disbelief at Albus Dumbledore, the pillar of light, voting a seat that one of his parents should be sitting in.
“Inquiry into the Potter Vote will begin now.” Grand Lady Longbottom was not happy. Although, she was beginning to think that maybe Neville had been on to something when he said that Harry Potter did not act like he was going to be a member of the Wizengamot when he left Hogwarts. “Record Keeper, is or was there a submitted copy of the Potter Will?”
“Aye Milady.” The Goblin holding the golden chest answered. “And a separate one for the Lady Evans.”
“Are there provisions for the passing of the Potter Heirship?” Lucius Malfoy asked.
“Aye, the Will of Lord Potter, states that Harrison James Evans Potter is sole family heir, this making him free to make certain decisions for himself as of the age of eleven, and total freedom by the age of sixteen.”
“Who are titled Guardians?” Lady Longbottom asked.
“Lord Sirius of House Black, Lady Amelia of House Bones, Lord Franklin of House Longbottom, or Lady Cerina of House Davin. There is also a muggle Guardian listed as Baron Jackson of House Davenport. He is listed as Lady Evans' older brother.” The Goblin read from his abbreviated copy of the will. Harry made a shocked sound that he struggled to hold in. Recovering quickly he apologized.
“Excuse my outburst, I was informed that I was left with the Dursley's because there was no directives from my parents and that Petunia Evans Dursley was my only living family.”
“No Mr. Potter, Lord Barron Davenport is very much alive. With a wife of fourteen years and a scattering of children between the ages of three and sixteen.” Harry's face brightened reflexively. He had more family members. 'Maybe they will even care about me and I can stay with them.'
“What is the date of the reading of the Wills, Record keeper?”
“They were read by a single individual before being sealed.” The Goblin said with a toothy grin. You could almost see the wheels in his head turning about what the information in his hands would do when unleashed upon this group of people.
“Who read them?” Harry asked, wondering who would have known what was going on and not done anything about it.
“Chief Warlock Albus Dumbledore. Mister Potter I will need to see you very soon about this matter.” The goblin representative said closing the book and tapping it with a long finger. The Book glowed for a moment before two sealed scrolls appeared on top of it. “Or if it pleases the court Mister Potter can read them quickly now.”
“Mister Potter would you mind reading sections of the will to the court?” Minister Fudge asked. Like everyone in the room, Minister Fudge had always wanted to hear the Potter will.
“I will read pertinent parts of the will now. And, Record Keeper, I will come by for a private reading later.” Harry said despite the sad objections from the Wizengamot members present.
“Mister Potter, you can leave the monetary and property endowments to yourself. We would like to know if they wrote about their survival plans, who was supposed to raise you and who would have been the one to teach you to be the proper heir of a great family.” Lady Bones asked as a party interested in Harry's wellbeing.
“Aye.” Harry unrolled his father's will and read over it quickly. “My father states that they used the Fidelius Charm to hide a small summer cottage in Godric's Hollow.”
“Who was the keeper of this secret?” Amelia Bones asked at the insistence of Susan, who was tugging on her elbow. Harry flashed a smile at Susan before continuing.
“He states that while they had wanted Lord Sirius of House Black to keep the secret, they chose Peter Pettigrew instead.” There was instant uproar in the Chamber.
“What do you mean that Sirius Black wasn't their secret keeper?”
“How did he give the location to He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named?”
“He did not. I have been trying to figure out how my Father's best friend could betray my parents to him. I found my Mother's diary earlier this summer.” Harry pulled the diary from his bag. “Lady Evans Potter, my dearly departed Mother, stated in her diary that Peter Pettigrew became an illegal animagus, whose form was a rat, during their sixth year at Hogwarts.” Harry showed the page to Percy. “I have seen a rat, at Hogwarts, that was missing a toe. This rat has outlived most if not all rats that would have been raised near the same time as him, being the pet of a dorm mates older brother. I have also seen this rat change into a man and fire the killing curse that robbed Lord Diggory of his only son.”
“Will you show those memories to the Wizengamot, as proof of not only how he died and Lord Blacks innocence.” Lord Diggory said looking withdrawn and miserable.
“Lord Diggory, I will show the memories to the Wizengamot, to ease your pain and allow you to find solace. As that is more important than trying to set the record straight on my godfather's incarceration. I am deeply sorry that I could not reach him fast enough to get the portkey into his hands and remove Cedric from this situation.” Lady Bones waved her hand toward the pair of Aurors that were standing near the front of the room. Harry concentrated very hard on Scabbers transforming into Peter Pettigrew. Once the memory was clear in his mind, he shook his head and one of the Aurors placed a wand to his temple and removed the shimmering memory strand. In the audience certain members of the Wizengamot began to sweat, questioning themselves as to whether or not Harry had seen them and if he would show them in front of Lord Voldemort being called faithful servants. Harry looked up into the audience, searching out the faces that he recognized from that horrible night, he winked at Lucius Malfoy before closing his eyes again and focusing on the memories again.
'No sense in burning bridges before I need to. Also gives me leverage for later if I need it.'
'You learn and recall quickly Harry. That is at least five people on the Wizengamot that now will owe you a favor.'
Harry thought very carefully about the graveyard, tears coming to his eyes. Harry nodded once more and the wand was pressed against his forehead again. Looking up again he caught Lord Malfoy's eye and smiled, Lucius visible relaxed in his chair. Off to the side of the room the Aurors dumped the first memory into the basin of a projection pensieve. A screen flickered and appeared against the blank wall. Harry watched as his memory of the Shrieking Shack played out for a larger audience. He had carefully edited out Professor Snape and Sirius, as to not cause undue questions. It was just Remus, Ron, Hermione, the rat and himself trapped in the small room. Everyone gasped as Peter Pettigrew admitted to betraying the Potters to the Dark Lord for power. He also admitted to killing the muggles and blowing up the street. The vision ended with Harry telling everyone to leave him alone so that he would find justice. The Aurors removed the memory from the pensieve and placed it in a crystal vial. They placed the second memory in the pensieve. Harry started this memory with the giant spider in the maze, showing Cedric's bravery and their joint defeat of said spider. As they approached the goblet the bickering about who would take the trophy and who would win the tournament was clearly heard. 'A Hogwarts Victory. The best of the schools, a joint Victory, Honor and Glory to both Houses.' They touched the trophy and the vision swirled, a tell-tale sign of a portkey being used, the graveyard appeared. Both boys landed in a heap. Harry watched himself tell Cedric to take the portkey back and get help. 'Kill the Spare', the eerie voice came from somewhere in the mist. The Harry, in the memory, swirled around as Wormtail came into view, arm raised wand glowing. The memory seemed to go into slow motion as the green curse erupted from Wormtail's wand and collided with Cedric's body. In slow motion you could see the life fade from Cedric's eyes as his body crumbled. The memory continued to show how Lord Voldemort regained his body. Harry's arm throbbed as his counterpart in the memory had his arm sliced. The memory faded as Lord Voldemort rose from the cauldron. This memory was also removed from the pensieve and placed in a crystal vial. There was a muted uproar at the rebirth of Lord Voldermort. Harry could hear everyone around him talking about it with terror in their voices. Fudge silenced the room and motioned for Lady Bones to procede.
“Lord Potter, could we, perchance, hold on to copies of these memories in order to help with the case against Peter Pettigrew and the new trial for Sirius Black.” Lady Bones asked as her Aurors brought her the vials.
“Of course Lady Bones.” Harry smiled. Lady Bones copied the memories and had the Aurors bring the original memories back to Harry.
“Mister Potter, as useful as these 'memories' were, we will need to see Peter Pettigrew in person in order to remove Sirius Black's guilt. Until the aurors can prove that he is alive, I am sure that this court will do nothing. Especially with your recent acts of indiscretion.” Delores Umbridge said resigned from her chair. The look on her face would make a demon run in the opposite direction. There was no need to think about what she was really meaning with her statement. Harry knew that she would be a person to watch out for anytime he was in the Ministry building.
“Unfortunately Mister Potter, I will have to agree with Madame Umbridge...”
“Minister Fudge, this court has gone on less proof to declare men guilty of serving the Dark Lord. I say we suspend the hunt for Sirius Black and take up the hunt for Peter Pettigrew. A physical body is all well and good but pensieve memories cannot be tampered with.” Lady Bones said.
Harry smiled to himself before he continued reading from his father's will. “The will also demarcates how I am to spend my years before Hogwarts and taking the family seat here. If Sirius was unavailable due to war or his employment I was to be raised alongside Neville Longbottom or Susan Bones if it was safe to stay in the Magical world. If there was not a resolution to the War or it was unsafe for me to remain in plain view in the Wizarding World Guardianship was to pass to my Muggle Relations as listed in my Mother's will.”
“Please read the corresponding sections of your Mother's will?” Lady Bones prompted. Harry smiled at her and then quickly read over his mother's will.
“The will states that Petunia Evans Dursley is of no blood relation to my mother. My mother was adopted in the muggle way after being found abandoned at the age of one month. She also states that the muggle family Evans or Rostin will gladly take me in and cover the expenses of my magical and muggle education since both families have prior knowledge of the Magical World. There is a letter in her private vault that states her real origins and who her real family is. It is also written that the Dursley Family is to have no say in my life due to their hatred of all things magical.” Harry paused as he fought to control his anger, he could feel his face getting hot. “Ladies and Gentlemen of the Wizengamot, may I ask what the fine is for knowingly overriding the will of the Patriarch or the Matriarch of a Noble Line?” A slightly diabolical smile came over Harry's face.
“Why Mister Potter?” Lord Malfoy and Minister Fudge almost mirrored the face that Harry had just made, within a few seconds of Madame Umbridge asking the question.
“Because both wills were not only read by Headmaster Dumbledore but also witnessed by him.” There was outrage around the room, Harry could feel it rolling off of everyone in the room.
“I demand to know what is going on here?” Grand Lady Longbottom demanded pulling Neville up beside her. “I demand that all Potter accounts, lands and votes be investigated. As Regent and Matriarch of House Longbottom. I also request an investigation into Lord Potter's home life. Scion Longbottom has listed many instances of Lord Potter looking abused and malnourished.” More gasps echoed throughout the room. Harry begun to shrink back in his chair, but aide came from an unexpected corner of the room.
“Lords and Ladies, Lord Potter does not want his personal business sprayed across the papers. Perhaps we could clear the room and have this discussed with just the Nobility, the victim and Minister Fudge, of course.” It was Lord Malfoy, one hand gripped onto Draco's shoulder to keep him from speaking.
“Thank you Lord Malfoy. I would prefer not to face a media circus on my way to the train to go to school.” Harry smiled gratefully
“Lords and Ladies, might I humbly suggest that we table the discussions of Lord Potter's home life until after he has been reinstated and all of the parties involved have time to put together their cases for what was done. This would also allow for Lord Potter to have his meeting with the Goblin Nation and find out what his Mother left him in her vault as a key to his real heritage.” A new voice entered the conversation, near the middle of the room stood Lord Antonio Greengrass. Daphne was smiling from behind her father.
“Very well Lords. Mister Harry Potter do you wish to take your place among the members of this great Governing Body?”
“Yes Minister Fudge, I am ready to take my place. I feel that Ancient House Potter would be better served with its Heir at the helm and not an aging Proxy.”
“Minister Fudge I must protest Mister Potter is still a year to young to be taking his place among the honored members of the Wizengamot.” Dumbledore stated, trying to save an ounce of his control.
“Lord Dumbledore, you will have no say in this matter. It states in the Book of Wizengamot that any minor heir, upon finding that their Proxy is not fulling their position to the best of their abilities then the heir may regain their seat from the Proxy by asking the assembled Wizengamot.”
“I still show my dissent by marking myself 'non narro'.” There were whispers around the room. A voting member would only mark themselves as 'non narro' only if one of two things were happening. Either they had a vested interest in the outcome that would not allow them to vote with a clear mind or they were outraged that something would have come before them, as if the answer required no brain power to reject the ideas out of hand.
“Do as you please Lord Dumbledore. There is no one stopping you.” Minister Fudge said. “Scribe, please tell us an available date for within the next four months that the Division of Children and Families can visit with Lord Potter.”
“In order to negate my missing class unnecessarily, can we please schedule this meeting for a weekend?”
“Vote to schedule the hearings into the raising of Lord Potter for weekends and school breaks.” There was a unanimous vote, much to Harry's surprise, to schedule the upcoming trials around his schedule. “The vote has passed. Lord Potter, is the second Saturday of September acceptable for you.”
“That is acceptable Scribe Weasley.” Harry approached Percy's desk to retrieve the reminder for his next court date. Written on the back of the reminder in Percy's tight neat script was a small note. ~Albus Dumbledore is voting seats that he shouldn't be. The Prewett seat should be mom's or dad's. Can you call for the Wills of the families that Albus Dumbledore is voting?~ Harry nodded slightly and Percy smiled.
“Ladies and Gentlemen of the Wizengamot. It weighs heavily on my heart and mind that even after a war, such tragedy and injustice can befall already devastated orphans. I kindly request here and now with the Department of Records and the Division of Orphans being present, that the wills left by titled and non-titled wealthy families be investigated. What is there are other children that have been abandoned, unable to get to Hogwarts, unable to prepare to make impacts on our Wizarding World?” Harry made sure to sound like a distraught but reserved young man, looking out for the future of the Wizarding World.
'You are catching on to the whole being an important blue blooded young man, aren't you?' The voice said
'I try. Percy was just begging for help.'
'Which was the right thing to do, the Potter thing to do. The Weasley Clan has always been, helpful, to our family.' There was a thoughtful silence around the chamber. A few of the members that Harry could see were nodding in agreement.
“Scribe, are we able to hear the reports in the two weeks time?”
“Yes, Lord Malfoy, we can have this courtroom prepared for a family court set of appearances. Does the division of Orphans have a rough estimate of how many young orphans are involved.”
“There are thirty five children orphaned in the last war with the Dark Lord. At least that is how many that we have the locations for.”
“Perhaps we can avoid inquiries into young Susan Bones and Neville Longbottom, as they are safely residing with family members and already in their training to be future members of the Wizengamot.” Neville's grandmother requested from her seat.
“Certainly, Grand Lady Longbottom, no need to cause undue stress.”
“Let us put aside this folly into naming Lord Potter a criminal. He has proved to our standards that the charges were unfounded.” Lady Bones said rising slightly in her chair. Minister Fudge, knowing that this was the angle that the rest of the Wizengamot was looking to go, called for the vote to clear Harry of all charges. A startling unanimous vote, proved that there were some topics that all of the members, dark, light or gray could agree on.
“Lord Potter, do you swear to uphold the laws set down by this Governing Body? To ensure peace through times of trial? To use your best judgment when items of law come before you?”
“I so swear.” A red ribbon of light flowed from the book of the Wizengamot towards Harry.
“Does House Potter accept their responsibilities to the Wizards and Witches of the Wizarding World? Do you accept your responsibilities of upholding the laws of our world, through the actions of House Potter?”
“I swear as heir apparent to House Potter.” The red ribbon of light sunk into Harry's skin.
“Rise Lord Potter, newest member of the Wizengamot, voting the Potter seat.” There was a smattering of applause from around the room. “This concludes our meeting. Blessed Part.” As Minister Fudge dismissed the actual meeting the white proxy sheet over the Potter seat vanished. Minister Fudge approached Harry with a smile. “Good to have you among us, Lord Potter. Do you need anything, help with figuring out how things work around the building?”
“Thank you Minister. I would greatly appreciate anything thing that you have to share, but I could never infringe upon your time, as it is very precious. Could you recommend someone that I could talk to with questions?”
“Weatherby.” The Minister yelled over his shoulder. “Weatherby should be able to help you. Weatherby, come here.” Percy approached them, frowning at the Minister slightly.
“Yes Minister. You called for me.”
“Spend some time helping Lord Potter learn what he needs to know in order to correctly fill his seat.”
“Of course, Minister. Lord Potter when would you be able to meet to go over the information?”
“Perhaps on Sundays. You can enjoy a good home cooked meal and discuss this all in the library.”
“Sounds lovely Lord Potter. Would I perhaps be able to bring my girlfirend Penelope? She has yet to officially meet the family.”
“That would be lovely. I am sure your parents would be thrilled. Do you plan on making amends with your Elders?”
“Yes, thank you for getting the ball rolling on having the Prewett seat investigated it should be Mother's.”
“As long as that is not the only reason you are seeking to have the vote restored.”
“No, I have the feeling that Mum's brothers' wills were forged. There is no way they wouldn't leave all of their belongings to Mum. Her parents had died two years before. Everything should have gone to her. Not Dumbledore.”
“Understandable. I shall inform the 'family' of your joining us on Sunday. I do believe that your Mum has planned a standing rib roast. Is Penelope allergic to or dislike any foods?”
“No, Lord Potter. Penelope is quite the food connoisseur.”
“Very well. I shall see you then. I gladly take my leave at this moment. See you on Sunday Scribe Weasley. May you and your Lady Love have a blessed day.”
“Thank You Lord Potter.” Harry left Percy standing near his desk and walked back towards where Neville and his schoolmates were standing. Carefully, he pushed the gate separating the floor from the seating area and joined his contemporaries in the risers. Headmaster Dumbledore stormed from the room, the doors slamming behind him. Harry saw Rita Skeeter get up from her chair and her eyes flick between him and the door, apparently deciding that the angry Headmaster was more entertaining than a wounded hero she tore out of the courtroom after him.
“Ah. It feels good to be a free man.” Harry smiled as he spoke.
“You seem to like to make a stir Lord Potter.” A young man looking oddly reminiscent of Pansy said.
“It comes with being The-Boy-Who-Lived. I am sorry, I did not seem to catch your name earlier.”
“I am Ulrich Parkinson, the oldest child of the oldest child of Lord Danderson Parkinson. I will be the heir apparent on the sixth of next month. Grandmother wants to see me installed before she passes, not that she has anything to worry about. I was not meaning to sound uppity Lord Potter, its just I've heard stories of your antics at school from my younger sister, it was pleasing to see that they weren't all exaggerations.”
“No need to apologize Heir Parkinson. I am sorry for the altercations that I have been involved in with your dear sister. Pansy and I are at an ideological impasse. But that is neither here nor there. I just wanted to meet and greet most of my contemporaries.”
“Harry.” A voice shouted up at him from the questioning floor. “Come down here. You must be going.” Harry looked over his shoulder towards the voice, annoyed to see the owner of said voice being Albus Dumbledore.
'When did he sneak back in here?'
'I'm not sure. He seems to have lost the beetle though.'
'He is really starting to annoy me. Does he truly think I'm going to kowtow to him?'
“I am sorry Headmaster, but I am quite busy at the moment. Also, since school is out I would prefer if you referred to me as either Lord or Mister Potter. We are not on that casual of speaking terms that I would answer to my given name to you.” Harry turned back to his classmates. A few of them were looking at him in awe.
“It seems that the 'Golden Boy' is not to fond of being the puppet of the Headmaster any longer.” Daphne Greengrass approached, tucking a long strand of her hair behind her ear, next to her walked Tracey Davis, both wore long green cloaks over black and silver robes that most of the heirs were wearing.
“Milady Greengrass, Milady Davis, you wound me with not so fond remembrances of my horrid past.” Harry held a hand to his heart, as if holding a bleeding wound. “Dear Ladies, let us assume that I shall never return to being anyone's man other than mine own. House Potter has been served a grave injustice and therefore will be seeking retribution.” Harry said, using some of the phrases and speeches that the voice was whispering in his ear.
“A declaration of intent and not even a half a candlemark into being a Lord. You do move fast and steadily, don't you?” Tracey said, stepping closer to Daphne. Harry took a second to look around the room without moving from facing Tracey and Daphne. The eyes of most of the room were on him and the teens gathering around him. Some were discreet, like Lady Bones and Lady Longbottom who were trusting their heirs to make good impressions on him, while other's were blatant.
“Dearest Tracey, may I call you Tracey?” Harry waited for her to nod before he continued. “Your inquisitiveness is highly intriguing. I find that those that do not stand behind their morals and their ideals with strong statements and actions to match are doomed to be viewed as weak and indecisive. I have been led around by my nose for too long and what better way to impress upon the gathered families that I will no longer be a puppet.”
“I look forward to seeing the endeavors that you throw yourself into in the future Lord Potter. I must admit that I like this new you. You are not the evil Gryffindor that we were instructed to ignore due to that awful letter sent to the Wizengamot on your behalf. I remember the day that the letter was read in front of the whole body, my Father came home spewing about ungrateful and scared children that were disrespectful to their Elders and the entire Wizarding World.” Ernie MacMillian said pulling lightly on the neck of his silver robes.
Neville walked Harry around the room, introducing him not only to heirs that attended Hogwarts as well as private academies but also to the Lords and Ladies that were seated in the Wizengamot. Harry met a lot of people that day, filing the little things that the voice and Neville could tell him about each of the people that he met. Neville had saved a small group of Ladies from the Crones' circle for last, they were gathered near his grandmother and Neville knew that it would be a difficult introduction.
Harry did his best to make an amazing first impression on the Ladies that could and would influence his future in the Wizarding world. No matter how many times that people told him that it was the Patriarchs of the Families that made all of the decisions he knew that these Ladies, these powerful Matriarchs, were the real power behind the Families. Standing before them for just a few seconds he could almost see the power radiating off of them in waves. After a brief interrogation by the Ladies he was freed to walk away but chose to stay, much to Neville's surprise, to ask the Ladies questions about recommendations to cover his training that had yet to begin. Lady Bones came over with Susan in tow and smiled at the scene of Harry sitting comfortably among the Ladies of the Circle of Crones. They all seemed to take to him, regardless of their Families background, she could see Harry as the changes in the future of the Wizarding World that Susan had told her were possible.
“Lord Potter, I am sorry to draw you away from this gathering of minds but I would like to ask you a question.” A voice asked from behind Harry causing him to spin in his chair.
“Lady Bones, you must never be sorry, I am but a young man trying to learn from my Elders that are more than generous with their sharing. Would you like to talk here or would another setting be more appropriate?” Harry asked turning just slightly from the Crones.
“On behalf of House Bones I would like to invite you to Dinner at Bones' Manor tonight. I can have my security detail escort you back to your residence tonight.” She seemed almost at ends with the phrasing of her request. Susan was standing a customary two steps behind her with a smile on her face that led Harry to believe that it was all her idea.
“I would love to Lady Bones, dinner with such beauty is an invitation that I could never pass up.” Harry smiled at them both, while internally yelling at his Guardian for taking over his mouth and speaking for him. Susan elbowed her aunt carefully.
“Grand Lady Longbottom, Susan and I would like to invite you and Neville to dinner as well.”
“Of Course Lady Bones. When should we arrive?”
“It is merely three o'clock now, how does six thirty sound to you?”
“Like a dream Lady Bones. We shall see you then.” Lady Bones and Susan walked away, Harry watched as they approached a few more families before heading from the room. “Neville, why don't you take Young Lord Potter to Longbottom Place to see the sights for a little while. I have a few loose ends to wrap up here before I can journey home.”
“Grand Lady Longbottom, would it be possible for Heir Longbottom and myself to journey into Diagon Alley. I am most certain that I do not have the proper clothes for being neither at Longbottom Place nor at Bones Manor.”
“Splendid idea. Neville, take Harry to Diagon Alley and you two have fun shopping. Please pick up this list while you are there.”She pulled a short list of items from her large red handbag and gave it to Neville.
“Of course Grandmother. We shall see you back at home as soon as possible. Have a great day ladies.” Neville and Harry bowed to the Ladies before leaving the courtroom via a private lift instead of the normal lift that Harry had come down in.