A/N: I don’t own Harry Potter
Chapter 6: Let me hear you scream
Albus Dumbledore always enjoyed the peaceful mornings, and he had taken to waking up well before the staff and students to enjoy the relaxing ambiance of the holidays. It was the morning after Christmas, and unlike his staff that stayed up late into the night he would beg off from the celebrations and turn in early.
The headmaster greeted a few paintings and headed to the great hall, expecting a solitary breakfast in the staff table. He was pleasantly surprised when the boy who lived himself was there eating his own meal in peaceful solitude. Perhaps this was the perfect opportunity to influence the savior of the wizarding world to his plans.
“Ah Harry, I did not expect you to be up so early.” The Headmaster greeted the first year Ravenclaw as he walked towards the long empty table.
“Good morning Headmaster.” The boy said politely after he finished swallowing a bite of scrambled eggs.
“Good morning to you too...” Albus smiled. “May I join you Harry? Although I am used to eating alone, I sometimes enjoy eating with the company of others during breakfast.”
The young boy nodded and smiled slightly as he indicated the seat across from him. The headmaster sat down, and a moment later a breakfast meal appeared in front of him.
“You enjoyed your Christmas I trust?” Albus asked as he buttered his bread.
“It was fine professor, and I was surprised to actually receive a few gifts.” Harry said.
“Oh? Was it a good haul this year?” Albus asked.
Harry never received Christmas gifts, and he was perplexed as to why he would receive one from Hermione, Padma and Michael Corner. He was used to ‘acquiring’ a few gifts for himself during Christmas at the Dursleys by nicking a few toys from his cousin and slipping a few action figures inside his pockets while in the mall.
His choices were rather limited, as he couldn’t obtain the bigger and more expensive toys that were popular since there was no space in his cupboard. As he grew older he learned that Jewelry and wallets was easier to conceal and easier to liquidate.
“It was a good haul.” Harry replied as he sipped his orange juice.
“That is nice to hear...” The Headmaster replied as he gazed at the window where the snow was falling gently. “For Christmas is the time for sharing and giving... a time for joy and laughter. By any chance did you perhaps receive an unusual gift?”
The headmaster stared expectantly at the young Potter waiting for his reply. He wanted to give the boy ideas about using the cloak and to stir the boy’s spirit of adventurism. He was expecting Harry to immediately wander the halls but the boy was acting like a true Ravenclaw, always holed up in his dorm room and reading his books.
Harry instantly knew then that it was the Headmaster that gave him the cloak and he narrowed his eyes wondering what the old coot was up to. “You gave me back my father’s invisibility cloak.”
Albus smiled at the sharp wit the boy who lived displayed. “Yes... your father had used it on many occasions... James had a taste for adventure. I hope that trait has passed on to you.”
Harry grinned at the Headmaster’s words as he finished his breakfast. The old coot had no idea how true that was. His mind drifted off to what the headmaster said earlier... Christmas was a time for giving and he realized he hadn’t gotten Penny or the old man a gift.
The young thief wondered what appropriate gift the old man would like... well he did have a collection of paintings, maybe he could use one more.
Albus sighed and looked at his pocket watch as he waited patiently on the unused classroom where the Mirror of Erised was recently delivered. Harry was not coming... after his talk with the young Potter he was expecting the boy to use the cloak and skip curfew, but the boy frustratingly followed the rules to the letter. He had no sense of adventure at all, and Albus Dumbledore was mildly disappointed.
On the other side of the Castle, the young thief was walking along the empty corridors looking for a painting to give to the old man and Penny. Harry stopped when he saw one that looked nice and drew his wand to see if there were charms anchoring it to the walls.
The boy smiled when he saw that it was just a simple sticking charm and quietly began to unravel the weaves of magic, just as Nicholas taught him. The person in the painting did not stir, as it was drunk from drinking from last night.
Nicholas Flamel yawned as he headed towards his private study and sat down on his desk to read the morning paper. His loyal house elf Bibby had already prepared his morning tea and he was about to sip when a loud shriek surprised him.
“AAAAAHHHHHHHHHH! Where am I? What have you done to ME?”
The Master Alchemist sprayed the tea in his mouth into the sleeping Sorting Hat, who woke up and started cussing at being rudely awakened.
“Nicholas! What in blazes are you up to?” The sorting hat whose demanded as it looked around. It spotted the painting hanging across the room and after a moment it started laughing, its soaked body shivering with mirth.
“Franz! You’re here! Who stole us? Who is the thief?” The Fat Lady shrieked as it addressed the sorting hat. “Help! Someone! I’m pure! Pure!”
Nicholas blinked his eyes, his face full of disbelief as he stared at the Fat Lady. The painting continued to shriek and scream and even crying Rape, waking up the Flamel household. The master Alchemist, fully awake by now sent a silencing spell to the painting as he walked quickly toward it.
Perenelle Flamel rushed into the study, still wearing her nightclothes and wand at the ready. “Nicky! What’s happening?”
Nicholas wearily removed a small note attached to the frame of the painting and handed it to his wife. He didn’t need to know who was responsible for this.
Perenelle took the leader and her lips twitched in amusement as she read the note.
Penny, Old Man,
“That was sweet of him.” Perenelle said as she stared at her husband who was palming his face in frustration as the Sorting Hat laughed on the background.
“It’s a good day for flying.” George Weasley said as he walked out of the Gryffindor Common, his twin and the three chasers following him out the Common Room.
“Yeah... the snow stopped falling... It would be nice to just play around.” Fred said.
“Fred, George, did you bring your gloves? It’s still cold out there, and your hands would freeze in a minute.” Angelina Johnson said.
“Oh yeah, mum got us new ones.” Fred said as he turned around. “You guys go on, I’ll catch... up” Fred Weasley’s mouth never closed as he stared at the bare wooden door where the Fat Lady used to hang.
“Fred?” George asked. “What’s wrong.... BLOODY HELL!!!!”
The three Chasers stopped in their tracks as they stared at the entrance of their Common Room, where the Fat Lady was now missing.
“The Fat Lady! It’s gone!” Katie Bell said as she, Angelina and Alicia Spinnet hurried back to the entrance to touch the bare wood where the painting used to hang.
“Who could have done this?” Alicia Spinnet asked. “And how are we supposed to go back to the Common Room?”
“He struck again...” Fred said as he glanced at his twin.
“Whoever did this got some guts.” George said a tone of admiration in his voice.
The Twins looked at each other and grinned.
“This is serious Albus!” Minerva McGonagall fumed. “First the sorting hat and now the Fat Lady! Clearly there is a thief among the students!”
Albus sighed as he stroked his beard, lost in thought, his mind running different scenarios as to why Quirrel would steal the painting of the Fat Lady. It served no purpose and had no relation to the Philosopher’s stone. Clearly he missed a detail, and wondered what sort of nefarious scheme the Defense Professor was planning.
“Do you hear me Albus? We have to catch the culprit! This is unacceptable! This is an attack on my House!” Minerva ranted while Severus Snape smirked, enjoying the reactions of his fellow head.
Minerva spotted the arrogant smile on the potion’s master face and focused her wrath on him. “You find this amusing Severus? Perhaps this is a scheme by one of your Slytherins!”
“Hardly.” Severus said as he placed the cup of tea he was drinking back on the table. “My snakes would never do such a thing. We are known for our subtly and cunning, not stupidity. This might be a harmless prank by two of your lions...”
“Fred and George Weasley were the ones that discovered the theft!” Minerva snapped back. “Even with their immature behavior, they are Gryffindors and the Fat Lady is as much of a symbol of our house. My lions would never do something so heinous... and dishonorable.”
“Are you insinuating that my snakes are without Honor?” Severus sneered.
“Severus, Minerva.” Albus stepped in before the bickering between the two heads worsened. “This is not the work of a student. Only eighteen students are staying with us, and most of them are not capable of this.”
“And the ones that are capable?” Minerva asked as she tried to calm herself down.
“The oldest students staying with us are the Weasley Twins, Bell, Spinnet and Johnson.” Albus said. “I have no doubt that they are not responsible for this and the first and second years are not capable of unraveling an advanced sticking charm.”
“What do we do now?” Minerva asked.
“To be through, search the common rooms and the dorms of the four houses, though I doubt that we will get any results there.” Albus said. “Have the students assemble at the great Hall while we have the staff do that, and Severus... check Quirrell’s living quarters.”
The four heads nodded and left leaving Albus Dumbledore wondering as to what was the purpose of this latest heist.
‘Maybe he had a fetish for... large women?’ Albus mused.
“Here he is mum!” Hermione said as she opened the book containing the picture of the boy who lived. She had recently received the latest book containing a picture of her friend and eagerly showed it to her parents. “That’s Harry Potter... and look you can see me there!”
The picture was recently taken without the boy knowledge, showing him eating in the great hall. As with all magical photos, the picture was alive and showed young Harry looking up as a flash attracted his attention and ducking his head immediately afterwards.
Emma Granger smiled at her daughter as she placed the book on her lap and stared at the picture of the famous Harry Potter.
“He’s awfully shy isn’t he?” Emma Granger observed while Dan Granger looked over his shoulder.
“So that’s the boy who had caught my baby girl’s fancy...” Dan said. There was something familiar with the boy, though he couldn’t place it.
“Daad!” Hermione complained as a blush colored her cheeks. “I don’t fancy him, he’s just a good friend that’s all.”
“Mhmmm.” Emma said, giving her daughter a disbelieving look. She knew it was normal for girls at that age to develop crushes.
“It’s true! He’s really nice! Did I tell you how he helped me with getting back my quill?” Hermione asked.
“You told us a hundred times dear.” Emma said as she smiled at her daughter. “And who is that beside you dear?”
“That’s Padma, my other friend and roommate. She’s really nice and friendly! We usually study together” Hermione said.
Emma Granger enjoyed the peace of the holiday as she listened at her daughter’s latest story. It was nice for once to have not another round of fighting with her husband. She knew her husband learned that lesson well, or the consequences would be dire.
Threatening to have magic vanish her husband’s manhood was enough of a threat, when she pretended that she befriended a witch while in Diagon Alley capable of delivering the threat.
“Do you know what trouble you’re getting me into? If anyone learns that two of Hogwarts priceless artifacts are in my home, I would get sent to Azkaban for sure!” Nicholas exclaimed as he waved his hand indicating the Fat Lady who was chatting amicably with the Sorting hat. Nicholas placed a modified one way privacy ward so that the painting couldn’t see beyond five feet to protect Harry’s identity.
“You didn’t like it?” Harry asked as he frowned.
“It was a lovely gift Harry” Perenelle said. “Though I wish your next gift would be obtained through legal means.”
Harry’s face blanched at hearing the word legal. “But that’s boring! Where’s the fun in doing that?” The boy who lives complained. “There’s no thrill...”
Penny sighed as she smiled at the young boy. At least his intentions were pure, but the manner of how he acquired his Christmas present was hilarious. The boy had a twisted sense of what was right and what was wrong, and she knew it would take a long time to correct that.
“By the way... did you finish the potion?” Harry asked.
“I just finished this last night.” Nicholas said as he fished out a bottle from his pockets and handed it out to the young thief. “That potion would let you pass through the fire unharmed.”
Harry smiled and nodded in thanks. He enjoyed solving the challenges that the Headmaster placed as protection for the Philosopher’s stone. However, the last barrier proved difficult as he didn’t trust the indicated potion that he was supposed to drink in the last protection since he was sure Severus Snape brewed it.
He would never drink anything the man made.
“So Hagrid... is the stone safe? Is the Cerberus doing well?” Albus asked in a loud voice, knowing well that Harry was reading in the corner of the library. “I know he likes to sleep after hearing music.”
Hagrid stared dumbly at the Headmaster, wondering why he was asking such a thing and not in his office. “Errr Yes Professor, Fluffy’s doing well... I was worried after his fight with that mountain troll, but he seems fine.”
“I am sure Nicholas Flamel would be happy to learn that his stone is safe.” Albus said aloud, discretely peering between the bookshelves where he knew the boy who lived was on the other side finishing his assignments.
“Errr sure Professor Dumbledore” Hagrid said, wondering where this was going.
“And I had recently inserted the stone inside the Mirror of Erised.” Albus continued. He was getting desperate as it was nearing the end of the school year. He noticed Quirrell was acting more strangely than usual and knew the man was about to steal the stone.
“Quirrell would never figure out that to retrieve the stone, one has to find it, not use it.” The Headmaster said again. “But if he manages to obtain it... Voldemort will come back again to power.”
“Professor, shouldn’t we discuss this in your office?” Hagrid whispered. “And why are you talking to the book case?”
“Perhaps you are right Hagrid” Albus said. Confident that the boy who lived had all the information the headmaster headed back to his office.
Harry sighed as he continued writing his assignment for Transfiguration. This was getting ridiculous... and it seemed the Headmaster had abandoned all pretense of being discreet.
“There you are! I’ve been looking all over for you!” Hermione said as she put her bag full of books opposite the chair Harry was sitting on.
“Really?” Harry asked.
Hermione sighed as she sat across her friend. “You agreed to study together after lunch, but you suddenly took off as soon as you finished your meal. You didn’t even wait for me and Padma!”
“You were taking too long” Harry shrugged as he finished writing his assignment. Carefully rolling the scroll, he placed it on his bag and pulled out his new toy to play with.
Hermione by now was used to her friend’s strange habits and only gave the strange object in Harry’s hand a passing glance, but the strange glint caught her eye. “What’s that Harry?”
“It’s just a paperweight.” Harry said as he made the ‘paperweight’ spin around the smooth desk. It made a strange noise and the young thief admired it as it sparkled against the light. “So where’s Padma?”
Hermione stared at the strange red stone and looked back at Harry who was looking at her intently.
“It looks like a ruby...” Hermione observed then she remembered Harry had asked her a question. “Anyway Padma and I decided to split up to look for you. She headed to the common room while I searched the library. She’ll probably head here soon.”
Harry nodded and leaned back on his chair, looking around for something to do.
“Harry, Is that Professor Dumbledore?” Hermione asked when she spotted the Headmaster and Hagrid walking towards the exit.
“Yeah” Harry said as he stared at the Headmaster’s back.
“What are they doing here? Surely the Headmaster has his own private library.” Hermione said. “I read from Hogwarts, a history that Dumbledore’s personal collection is among the most extensive in Europe. Surely he’s not looking for a book here.”
“Maybe he’s getting desperate.” Harry said as a smile crossed his face.
“Catch!” Harry said as he tossed the package towards the old man. The boy who lived was happy since he was able to complete his first mission.
“Oh Good!” Nicholas beamed at his young friend, his irritation with the boy vanishing in an instant.
Nicholas inspected his Philosopher’s stone for any sign of damage, and satisfied that everything was fine he glanced at the boy who lived. “You did well Harry, I’m proud of you.”
“Thanks.” Harry grinned as he sat down on the chair in front of the desk.
“Did you find the last defense after the fire difficult?” Nicholas asked.
“Not really... it was tricky at first but I manage to figure it out.” Harry said. “The stone was hidden inside a magical mirror.”
“A mirror?” Nicholas asked.
“Yeah... it shows your heart’s desire.” Harry grinned.
“That’s the mirror of Erised... it’s an old artifact, and very, very dangerous.” The old man said. “How did you remove the stone from the mirror?”
“I was excited that i would finally complete my first mission... and getting my hands on the most valuable thing that I have acquired so far that I was solely focused on finding the stone.” Harry explained.
“And your reflection gave you the stone since you weren’t thinking of using it, only recovering it.” Nicholas added. “That has to be Dumbledore’s idea of secure protection. Only an insane wizard would do such a thing.”
“Well it is kind of witty...” Harry began but stopped when the old man shot him a dark look.
“Fine... it was dumb... but seeing your own reflection move independently from you is wicked.” Harry admitted.
“Now since you are successful in recovering the stone for me, I have a reward for you... and a request.” Nicholas said as he placed a flask filled with silver potion on the desk.
“Really?” Harry perked up, eager to see his reward.
“How far are you with the tome I gave you? I am curious.” Nicholas asked.
“I did manage to sprout of fur in my hand... but that’s it.” The boy who lived said.
“This will accelerate your progress.... it’s a new invention of mine.” Nicholas said. “Within an hour of drinking this you will complete the transformation.”
Harry’s eyes widened as he looked at the potion with hunger and anticipation in his eyes. “Can I drink it now?”
“Later perhaps... but first you must return your Christmas gift to me Harry. Although I appreciate the thought, the fat lady is not really suited here as she constantly disrupts my work.” The Alchemist said.
“Fine... I’ll do it right now...” Harry said. “And I think I may have an idea where to put that back. Just make sure you have that potion ready for me, as I really want to see my form.”
“What is your form?” Nicholas asked curiously.
“A Jaguar.” The boy who lived said proudly.
Professor Quirrell warily looked around and waved his wand to open the door to the third floor corridor. Immediately the defense professor heard the booming barks of the Cerberus and he immediately conjured a harp that started playing soothing notes.
The barking immediately stopped and the large three headed dog slowly drifted to sleep beside the Trap Door. Quirrell grinned in triumph and grabbed the handle of the trap door when a loud piercing shriek made him drop the handle.
The defense Professor immediately straightened up and turned around to look for the source of the sound. Quirrell was dumbstruck as he stared at the portrait of the Fat Lady who wore a caught in the act look on her face while she held a broken wine glass.
“I was practicing... the music from the harp was inspiring...” The Fat Lady giggled. “Look I broke the glass with my marvelous voice.”
Quirrel made to draw his wand and incinerate the irritating painting when he felt drops of liquid fall on his neck. He looked up and saw a large jaw filled with large teeth before he felt incredible pain and then passed out.
The Fat lady passed out as she stared at Fluffy’s newest chew toy. The Cerberus was happy since its three heads could easily rip apart the limbs unlike the Troll it fought earlier.
“Jaguar indeed...” Nicholas struggled not to laugh out loud as it stared at a relatively young black kitten with green eyes.
The kitten snarled cutely as it raised an adorable paw in an attempt to scratch the old man who was sitting behind his desk.
“HAHAHAHAHA!” Nicholas let out a deep joyous laugh unable to contain the mirth bubbling deep within him along with Franz the sorting hat.
The kitten narrowed its eyes and leapt to a chair and finally to the desk to confront its tormentors.
“Aw! AW! Harry! Not the thread! I’m a thousand year old magical artifact!” The Sorting hat said. “Nicholas! Help!”
The kitten looked as if it didn’t care if the hat was a thousand years old or not as its paws let out tiny sharp claws. It raised the hairs on its back and prepared to pounce when it was suddenly picked up and cuddled.
“OHHH!!! Nicky! He’s sooo cute!” Penny said as she held the struggling kitten on her arms. “Is this Harry? Oh you’re so adorable!”
The kitten pushed down its ears in annoyance as it snarled(cutely) at its captor but it soon succumbed to a strange and satisfying sensation as Penny tickled his nape.
“Oh he’s purring! Oh isn’t that sweet!” Penny giggled.
Nicholas let it Harry endure the ministrations of his wife when he soon felt pity for the boy. Perenelle was sometimes took it too far and the Master Alchemist waved his wand.
Harry immediately transformed but he still continued purring while he was still in Penny’s arms. His eyes widened and he immediately faded and appeared well out of reach of the woman.
“You still need to learn about changing back.... the first transformation is always the hardest.” Nicholas said though his lips continued to twitch in amusement.
“I know... I couldn’t transform back no matter how hard I tried.” Harry said as he scowled at Penny and the sorting hat.
“Well you should be able to do it now, and it gets easier when you get used to it.” Nicholas said. “Harry, you... you said you were a Jaguar.”
The boy who lived shot the old man a filthy look. “I thought that too,”
“Well let me tell you, you’re a very adorable young housecat.” Franz added.
Harry turned to the sorting hat. “Do you want to be turned into a ball of yarn?”
“Why don’t you practice again Harry, and after that you can go back to Hogwarts. Your friends might be looking for you.” Nicholas said , distracting Harry when he saw the boy really meant to deliver the threat.
“Alright... one more try.” Harry agreed and he closed his eyes and concentrated. His body suddenly shrunk as black hair sprouted along his face and body, and a moment later a black kitten stood where the young thief was standing a moment ago.
The black kitten stared at its paw as it tested flexing its claws in and out of its sheath.
The kitten immediately looked up and its brilliant green eyes widened when it saw the rampaging penny headed for him. Panicking the kitten ran out of the room, slipping through the crack on the door.
Harry is a cat animagus, and he is a kitten since he is eleven. He'll grow eventually.
Logic behind that ( Harry's young by human standards, and if transformed to a cat, he would be kitty sized.)
A/N: Inpirations for this story:
The Thomas Crown Affair (Pierce Brosnan and Rene Russo)
Ocean's eleven - Harry always eats something(sandwich etc) just like Brad Pitt does in that movie.
Lupin the third (when they get older) Fujiko baby!!