Categories > Books > Harry Potter > There is Only Power

Legal Aid

by loralee1 2 reviews

AU post OotP, possible HBP elements but not HBP compliant. Independant Harry summer after 5th year. No Pairing

Category: Harry Potter - Rating: PG - Genres: Action/Adventure - Characters: Dobby, Dudley, Harry, Snape - Warnings: [?] - Published: 2006-03-23 - Updated: 2006-03-23 - 5066 words

There is Only Power
By Loralee

Disclaimer: I don't own Harry Potter

AU Post OotP, some HBP elements but not HBP compliant

Chapter 6
Legal Aid

Lunch was nearly over when Rocnose informed Ragnok of several things. Albus Dumbledore was in the main lobby demanding to see Ragnok, Amelia Bones was in the security entrance with Auror Blackthorne asking to see Mr. Potter or Professor Snape and Richard Stone had arrived for a meeting with Mr. Potter.

Ragnok sent goblin guards to inform Dumbledore that he was in a meeting and that Dumbledore could either make an appointment for later in the week or he could wait on the possibility that he could be seen in several hours. If Dumbledore wanted to wait the guards were to escort him to a waiting room just off the main lobby.

Snape wanted to talk to Amelia and asked to use a private room. Ragnok agreed and accompanied Snape, as he also wanted to speak to Bones.

Harry and Dudley waited in the conference room for the solicitor to be brought to them.

Richard Stone was an older man, tall with silver hair hanging down his back, clean-shaven with rugged features. Dudley thought he looked like Sean Connery. He entered the room with a smile on his face and his hand held forward to shake.

"It is such a pleasure to finally see you again Mr. Potter." He said.

"A pleasure to meet you sir, this is my cousin Dudley Dursley, when did we meet sir. I don't think I remember you." Said Harry politely.

"Oh, no you wouldn't remember. James brought you with him to my office once to sign some papers. You've grown quite a bit since then." Said the smiling man. "Now what can I do for you today Mr. Potter? I didn't expect to meet you until you came of age."

"Oh well Ragnok suggested I speak to you. My guardians, err Dudley's parents were killed this morning." Harry ran a hand down his face he was beginning to be very tired while Dudley sniffed a little.

"You both have my most profound condolences Mr. Potter, Mr. Dursley." Replied Stone with a look of sorrow.

"Thank you. Well I've asked Ragnok to be my guardian because otherwise Dumbledore is going to continue to try to manage me. Ragnok said to give you this file. Oh and Dudley's going to need help with his parents estate. So I guess what I want is to know if you are willing to help us. I was told today that I have lots of money so that shouldn't be a problem." Harry trailed off at the surprised expression on Mr. Stone's face.

"I'm sixteen and I don't want my Aunt Marge as a guardian, I'd rather be emancipated if possible and Ragnok said you do norm err muggle law too." Said Dudley.

"My I see the file Mr. Potter?" Stone asked in grave tone.

Harry pushed the file toward Mr. Stone while saying, "yes but please call me Harry, sir."

Stone nodded absently and began to look over the file. When he was done he laid down the papers and sat back in his chair with a sigh.

"First off yes Harry, Dudley, if I may call you that? I will represent both of you. I consider myself on permanent retainer to the Potter family. You have been badly treated Harry. I drew up your parents wills, there were certain provisions that were not followed and although I do not believe you have legal recourse these irregularities may help you achieve a level of independence from Dumbledore's interference." At Harry's questioning look he when on.

"Your parents made arrangement for two guardians. Sirius Black your godfather was primary. He would have had custody of you and control of your estate. Their second choice was your godmother Alice Longbottom who would have had custody of you if Black were unable or already deceased. Your estate however would have gone into a trust with maintenance payments being made for your care. The third option was three people, Albus Dumbledore, Minerva McGonagall and Remus Lupin were to choose a loving Wizarding family for your placement, the estate would be placed in the trust and a maintenance payment made for your care. It appears that Dumbledore made the placement to your relatives on his own and failed to notify the goblins that maintenance payment be made to the Dursleys." He frowned.

"I have a godmother? The Longbottoms weren't attacked till several days after my parent's deaths and I was taken to Privet Drive. Why wasn't I given to them instead?"

I have no answer for that Harry, I'm afraid that Dumbledore himself in the only one with those answers. What he did is not enough to charge him with breach of contract but maybe enough to get him to tell you why."

"You've already taken care of the guardian situation, I see you have your wand rights and are going to go over the estate with an account manager. If you have any questions feel free to contact me. As the heir of both the Potter and Black family lines you control two seats in the Wizengamot. The Black seat has been empty for sometime, you could choose a proxy for that; I believe Dumbledore holds the proxy for the Potter seat. I would expect him to ask for the Black proxy once it becomes know that you are the Black heir. You also have a seat on the Hogwarts Board of Governors that can be claimed as a founder's heir."

Stone looked up at the strangled sound from Harry. "You were unaware of these things?"

Stone looked closely at Harry who was looking rather ragged around the edges.

"There is quite a lot about your family that you should be told Harry but I believe that today is not the day. You are tired and have had a loss. You've learned quite a bit already today and need to take time to absorb it. Why don't we agree to meet in a few days? You can write down any questions you have and I'll do my best to answer them."

Harry scrubbed at his face and nodded relieved not to have to deal with anything more for a while. Stone pulled his wand a conjured a cot for Harry to lie down on. He didn't hear much the conversation with Dudley.

"Dudley, I'm going to need some information from you. Do you feel up to discussing this with me right now?"

"Yeah, he was up all night I got some sleep. It's been a long morning and I'm still kind of upset but it's got to be done and I sure don't want Aunt Marge to boss me or take Dad's money. She will if she get a chance I'm sure. That Bones lady was going to have the constables notify her and tell her I'd call."

Several hours later Harry woke to Dudley large fingers poking him in the shoulder.

"Harry you need to get up now," poke. "There's things you have to decide," poke. "Are you awake yet?" Harry opened his eyes to find Dud leaning over about to poke him again.

"Lay off Dud or I'll hex you." Snarled Harry still not quite awake. A low chuckle let him know they weren't alone. Harry looked around to find Snape smirking at him.

"Tsk, tsk Potter hexing muggles is illegal. You'll tarnish your golden boy reputation."

"Bugger off Snape you're not my teacher now and you can't blame any one else for your nasty attitude now so why don't you just stay the hell away from me." Snarled Harry rubbing his scar and sitting up. Dudley looked shocked and Snape paled.

"You are quite right Mr. Potter forgive me. I'm finding old habits rather hard to break. I will try harder. You've been nothing but polite this morning while trying to help me." Said Snape in a contrite tone.

Harry just stared at him, shook his head and rubbed his scar once more.

"Sorry I snapped I've got a massive headache. So what did you need Dud?" Asked Harry.

Snape answered, "We've made tentative plans Mr. Potter and need your approval to go any further. Would you like a headache potion?"

Harry eyed Snape warily a bit confused.

"Do you have one handy sir?" Asked Harry.

Snape pulled out a small pouch and enlarged it and pulled out a vial that Harry recognized as headache potion. Harry downed the potion on his head immediately began to feel better. Snape pulled out a second vial and offered it to Harry.

"Revitalizer Mr. Potter, similar to pepper up." Harry drank and did feel much better.

"Thank you sir, now that I can think again, what's going on?"

"Madam Bones, Senior Director Ragnok, Mr. Stone, Mr. Dursley and I have been discussing the war and your safety. Although I was not privy to the entire prophecy I know that Albus believes you are the one who is destined to defeat the Dark Lord. Unlike Albus we agreed that you need support and training to accomplish this and that in the end it is you who much be in charge of that training. There fore we are asking for your approval for the plans that we discussed while you were sleeping."

Harry couldn't quite believe that this was Snape talking like this.

"I have a house in a muggle area. It is already warded, no one knows of it, and we can go there this afternoon. Funeral arrangements have been made and I will be able to escort you shopping tomorrow. Madam Bones is willing to provide an Auror trainer for you and whomever you think will be with you. The Senior Director has made arrangements for you to receive both goblin armor and training from a goblin battlemaster. I don't believe a wizard has ever received such an honor." Snape shook his head. "Do you realize Mr. Potter just who your guardian is?" Snape arched an eyebrow at Harry and Dudley snickered.

"Uhm, a manager for Gringotts?" stammered Harry, shrugging.

"No, Mr. Potter Ragnok in not a 'manager' for Gringotts. Senior Director Ragnok is the Head of Gringotts, the top goblin, not to mention he is on the ruling counsel and is a Senior Battlemaster as well. You Mr. Potter ask the most important goblin in the country to be your guardian and he said yes." Snape smirked at the shock on Harry's face.

"Well he didn't have to say yes, besides he's nice and I trust him." Retorted Harry.

Snape chuckled that low laugh again.

"Madam Bones said the Ministry resembled an ant hill someone kicked over this morning when those papers arrived. Albus is still waiting in the atrium. Pettigrew and Black made the front page of a special edition this afternoon, I've a copy for you."

"Sir, please don't take this the wrong way but why are you doing this? I mean you and I have never gotten along, I know now that it wasn't really your fault how you acted. It was pretty clear in Dumbledore's research and what with the role you were playing but after all that I thought you'd really rather go far away. I think I would if I had a choice."

"Mr. Potter I have given this some thought. I believe I owe you quite a debt."

Harry interrupted, "You don't owe me anything Professor. You've saved my life and my dad was horrible to you. I probably owe you."

"No I owe you my freedom, Harry, and I owe it to myself to stay and finish this war. I don't want to be the kind of man who runs away from his problems. That is what got me into this mess in the first place; I ran away from one problem to the Dark Lord, I ran from him to Albus. I don't want to run again. I choose to aid you in whatever way I can. Please let me help Mr. Potter. I would be willing to oath myself to you if you desire."

Snape's words hung in the air between them. Harry took a deep breath.

"Thank you for your offer sir, I don't need an oath, I accept your aid. So what's next?"

"I have a portkey to take us to Briarwood. We'll need to set up owl post filters as soon as we get there. I scanned you while you were sleeping Mr. Potter there is already a strong filter on you. I imagine Albus is withholding or blocking at least part of your mail. It is standard for a high profile student while at school but usually the responsibility of the parent during holiday's."

Harry nodded; he understood how to do those spells from reading An Adult Wizards Guide to Daily Life.

They grabbed the portkey and soon were standing in a dark dirty entrance way. Dust filtered through the air, the wallpaper was peeling, and furniture was covered but smelled musty.

"How long since you've been here sir?" Asked Harry thinking this was worse that Sirius' place.

Snape looked around dismayed, "At least twenty years." He said. "I didn't think it would be in this bad of condition."

"To bad you don't have a house elf sir. If Dobby were here." Harry didn't get to finish his sentence because he was being assaulted by an overly excited elf.

"Oh Harry Potter sir, Dobby is so glad you has called him, Dobby is very happy to serve Harry Potter sir and work in Harry Potter's house." Dobby's speech ran down as he began to look around, "this is Harry Potter's house? It is needing much working. Would Harry Potter sir be wanting Winky to come to Harry Potter too?"

Harry thought fast and said, "What will you tell the Headmaster Dobby?"

"Dobby be telling Headmaster that Dobby and Winky be working for family. Winky be needing family. Winky is not liking Hogwarts and is wanting family."

"It's up to you I sir. We could use some house elves to make it habitable." Said Harry.

Snape nodded and Dobby jumped up and down and vanished with a pop. Harry gave a laugh.

"I guess we better look around. Maybe prioritize the renovations."

Dobby and Winky popped in at that point. Winky was wearing a dirty, tattered dress and staring at the floor.

"Harry Potter sir, Winky wants to bond. Winky does not like being free. Dobby needs to bond too please."

"What, I thought you liked being free Dobby?" said Harry surprised.

"Dobby likes being free much better than belonging to evil master but Winky is being wanting elflings and Dobby is being wanting to give Winky elflings and free elfs is not being able to have enough magic for elflings." Said Dobby in a rush.

Harry looked at Snape who's mouth was beginning to turn up and Dudley who was beginning to turn red and sighed.

"At least I won't have to worry about Voldemort any more. Hermione will kill first. Ok Dobby what do I have to do?"

"Master Harry Potter sir only has to accept Dobby and Winky as his and give permission for elflings." Said Dobby with a bounce.

"I feel like I'm being set up." Stated Harry, "Ok, lets get one thing straight. You will wear nice clean clothing not rags or towels." Dobby nodded bouncing and Winky nodded as well.

"I will pay you each 3 gallons a month for you to spend on whatever you wish." Winky's head began to shake. "Like things for the baby," Winky's head stopped as she considered and then nodded, Dobby bounced faster.

"You can ask for you freedom at anytime but if I give you clothes it just means I want to see you wearing something nice not that I'm freeing you." Winky gave a little huff and smacked Dobby into stillness.

"Wes agree Master Harry Potter sir." Said both Dobby and Winky and then they snapped their fingers and Harry felt a tiny tickle under his skin for a moment.

"Good then I accept your services and any elfings are between the two of you. You don't need my permission." Smiled Harry.

"Thank you Master Harry Potter sir. Wes be cleaning." Cried a widely grinning Dobby popping away with a widely grinning Winky.

Harry stood there for a moment thinking about the conversation with an odd feeling of something not quite right. He turned to the man beside him.

"Something's not... I was just taken advantage of wasn't I? I'm just not sure how exactly." Harry said.

"You didn't limit their breeding Potter, how much do you know about house elves?" Sneered Snape and then he burst into laughter, shook his head and started up the stairs leaving Harry to contemplate one word in the conversation, 'elfings' was plural.

Some time later Harry, Dudley and Snape sat down at the kitchen table in a relatively clean kitchen to a late supper. The food was filling and tasty and there was plenty of it. Harry made Dobby sit with them to discuss plans for the house though Winky refused to sit and glared somewhat at Dobby. Snape was taking the Master bedroom with en-suite on the first floor, as it was his house. Dudley and Harry had taken rooms on the second floor. That floor had six bedrooms surrounding a large common area and two bathrooms one on either end of the common area. On the ground floor was the entrance hall leading to the stairway with doors on the right leading to the living room and library and doors to the left to the kitchen and a formal dining area. Behind the kitchen was a second stairway that ran from the basement to attic. The basement contained a small potions lab, wine cellar and storage areas. The attic was sectioned into two rooms one contained assorted boxes, trunks and furniture. The other was empty and Harry with Snape's permission told the elves to make that their space.

Harry and Snape had examined the wards. And had decided to upgrade them the next day and also ask Ragnok to have goblin wards added. There were already two sets of wards. The first set was based on a short wall that ran the entire property boundary. The inner wards were based on the foundation and included the standard fire and damage retardant.

Dudley was to meet Mr. Stone the next day to talk to Aunt Marge and visit Privet Drive to gather a few more things. Both Mr. Stone and a constable would be with Dudley for his return to the house.

Harry had a meeting in the afternoon with Ragnok to discuss battle training and just what being the ward of a goblin would involve and what kind of aid Harry could expect from the goblins. Harry had decided to share the prophecy with Ragnok then.

Snape would supervise the elves on the renovations and repairs and Dobby would go out for the supplies.

Dudley wanted Harry at the funeral so going shopping for a muggle suit had to be squeezed in somewhere. After supper they agreed they had a plan and all retired to beds that Winky had aired and made up while they talked. Harry had wondered where she found the time but barely managed to get through his Occlumency exercises before he was sound asleep.

A sharp pain to his ear awakened Harry. Hedwig had found him and didn't seem pleased that he'd not told her where he was going or put out food and water when he got there. Harry apologized thankful he'd remembered to open the window.

He dressed and went down stairs for breakfast. Snape was already sitting at the table and smiled when Harry came in to the room.

"Mr. Potter, Harry did you sleep well?" Asked Snape in a cheerful tone.

Harry nodded at Snape and asked, "You all right sir?" He thought Snape was abnormally cheerful.

"I am very well, thank you. I feel better than I have in years; I actually slept through the night. May I take a look at that research journal?" Asked Snape.

"I thought you might want to see it, sir. I'll bring it down before I go to Gringotts later. It also has some things about my scar. I'd really like if you could check my research?"

Snape nodded and Dobby brought down the mail from the depository in the attic. Snape waved his wand and one glowed orange. Harry used his wand to separate it from the others and recognized the Headmaster's writing. The analysis showed a portkey charm place on the letter inside the envelope.

"Apparently Albus wants to talk to you. If there is no response his next letter will have a tracer I'm sure. We'll need to include a sub ward for that." Said Snape.

Harry pushed the letter to the side to take to his meeting with Ragnok as the portkey wouldn't activate until the letter was opened and they could discuss what to do about it.

Snape opened the paper to screaming headlines.

Boy Who Lived Goblin Ward

By Mona N. Gosip

An inside source at the Ministry of Magic confirmed that Harry Potter The Boy Who Lived chose Senior Director Ragnok of the Goblin High Council to be his guardian in an unprecedented move yesterday. Harry Potter, whose muggle guardians were killed yesterday morning in an unsuccessful Death Eater attack, is just sixteen years old and is legally able to choose his own guardian. However Ministry officials are concerned that this is a move by the goblin government to force further concessions.
In a press release late yesterday afternoon, Ragnok himself confirmed that he is in fact Harry Potter's chosen guardian and stated that the goblin nation would stand firm against the growing threat of He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named.
We here at the Daily Prophet can only praise Harry Potter for his actions. He has single handedly brought the goblins in on the side of light in the midst of his own grief and loss.

For more on Harry Potter's heroic battle see pg 4.

"Wow I'm a hero again." Said Harry in a sarcastic tone.

Harry Potter Defeats Death Eaters in Horrific Battle
By Mona N. Gosip

The MLE has released details surrounding the attack on Harry Potter and his family in the early hours of July 31st.
Potter age 16 heard the intruders and was able to ambush the Death Eaters as they entered his residence. During the resulting battle Vernon Dursley, muggle age 47, and his wife Petunia Dursley, muggle age 44 sister to the late Lily Potter, were killed. Harry Potter was able to save his cousin (named withheld) from the rampaging Death Eaters. Potter, also known as the boy who lived, killed nine Death Eaters and captured two. Names of the Death Eaters are being withheld at this time pending investigation.
We here at the Daily Prophet wish to applaud Mr. Potter for his valiant efforts and offer our deepest sympathies for his lose.

Harry just held his head in his hands. Everyone knew he was a killer. At least they wouldn't be after Dudley. Harry looked at the letters on the table with dread. He really didn't want to open them to find his friends hated him for becoming a killer. He'd have to tell his friends the real story.

Harry, mate you ok?
Bill came in last night for supper. He told us that you'd been attacked and that the order hadn't come for you. That you have a goblin for a guardian and that Dumbledore spent the entire day waiting to talk to the goblins about you but they ignored him. Mum was upset that you didn't ask her and Dad but Dad said you were probably afraid they'd say no or get killed or something crazy like that. You know you could've come here. Dad said it might have been hard though to get custody of you 'cause Dumbledore would have interfered.
Mum and Dad aren't happy with Dumbledore at all 'cause they think he should have stopped us from going to the DoM and Gin and I told them you didn't know about the prophecy but that Hermione said that if you were able to take it off the shelf then it had to be about you. Dumbledore told them it was nothing but Gin and I agree that it had to be something and since you've been attacked again I think Mum and Dad believe us now. Well if you need anything let me know. Stay safe and let Mum know you're ok soon.

Harry laughed it sounded as if Ron was ok with him having a goblin guardian but he wondered how he'd respond to today's paper. He still needed to respond to the birthday greetings he'd received before the attack also.

"Shall we work on the wards now Harry?" asked Snape standing up from the table. Harry nodded he had a lot to do today it was best to get started.

Ward setting had gone smoothly, he'd learned a lot during it, had been able to work comfortably with Snape and had impressed the older man with his ability and power.

Snape had taken Polyjuice and Harry used his glamour when they'd apparated into London for what Harry had hope was a short trip for a suit. Snape had insisted that he buy some decent slacks and shirts and Harry had also bought new shoes, belt, socks and underwear.

Harry knew apparition theory from An Adult Wizards Guide to Daily Life however as he was not licensed yet so Snape took him side along which he was not impressed with. Ragnok could sign a waiver for him to get his license now that he had his wand rights and Snape offered to supervise his practice.

Dressed in new clothes Harry portkeyed to his meeting with Ragnok. He was surprised not to be taken to Ragnoks office; instead he was escorted further into the bowels of Gringotts down in to the Goblin warrens themselves.

Ragnok introduced him to several other goblins and then to a scarred, gnarled old goblin who would be his teacher, Battle-master Ed.

Harry thought Ed an odd name for a goblin but didn't mention it. Ed's scars attested to the fact that he was a survivor and that was good enough for Harry. Between Ragnok and Ed they decided that Harry would train with the Battle-master three mornings a week. Ed had a small cadre of trainee's that Harry would join. Ed believed that Harry was to puny for axe work so would teach him staff work instead, physical training and what ever goblin battle magics he could pick up.

Then he was taken to the armorer to be measured for goblin armor. Hammertoes promised armor within three days.

Finally they arrived in what Ragnok told Harry was his private dwelling. He met Ragnok's mate and two of his sons. Then they sat in the study. Harry's chair was small and the ceiling low but somehow it felt right.

"Thank you Ragnok for allowing me to meet your family and see your home." Said Harry. "I hope what you did for me hasn't caused problems for the goblins."

Ragnok stared at Harry for a moment.

"Harry I should be the one thanking you for this opportunity. Wizards may trust us with their money but they still believe that we are beneath them. Your choice of me for a guardian is making many wizards rethink long held beliefs. The council was most impressed with this masterful strategy for good press. My standing among them has risen." Ragnok laughed. "The Ministry is already asking for our aid in confiscating moneys belonging to known Death Eater's. Don't worry we will be insisting on trials with Veritaserum and a wealth of red tape to confiscate convicted Death Eater personal funds. We have already moved to freeze the assets of Death Eaters."

"The council was going to treat you simply as a ward however you should be aware that because we have already seen a increase in community wide trust and respect for goblins in general that they are discussing allowing you goblin rights and entrance into a clan. Some of this will depend on how well you do in training though none can deny that you are already a blooded warrior."

Harry was a bit shocked at the fall out of his hasty decision but it seemed to be turning out all right.

"I really just wanted to get away from Dumbledore. Oh I got a portkey in the mail from him this morning." Said Harry pulling out the envelope. Ragnok got an evil look on his face.

"I will take care of it Harry. After all you are under my protection."

Harry shivered slightly at the tone and grinned back.

"I also thought you might want to know the prophecy the one that says I have to kill Voldemort." Ragnok looked thoughtful for a moment and nodded.

After hearing the prophecy Ragnok and Harry discussed interpretations for a time. Finally Ragnok said.

"Yes it says you must be the one to vanquish this dark wizard but it does not say you must do it alone. He has followers, perhaps an army by the time you are ready. You can have an army also. Your Mr. Snape has told me of the mark, some his followers may not be there of there own free will they may be turned or used, perhaps they can be scared, their ranks broken. You must inspire your followers to honor and pride and they will not break or flee."

"But they may died. I don't want anyone else to die for me." Said Harry in a small voice.

"Yes they may die. You must tell them that may be their fate. Then they must choose for themselves. If you try to make the choice for them, to choose their path by not allowing them to fight if they wish, then you are just a wrong as the dark one who forces his followers to died with out choice." Said Ragnok and Harry knew he was right. Inside something eased and he knew with out a doubt now that Sirius' death was not his fault.
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