Disclaimer: In this story I used quotes from Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, but I don't mean any harm by it, nor do I wish to sell this. Anything un-canonly the characters do in this story is all my fault.
Author's Note: This is the sequel to The Godfather Parts I and II. It will cover Harry's first year at Hogwarts. Please read the first two parts first or things won't make much sense.
I would like to thank my beta readers Whimsy, CornedBee and Jo Wickaninnish!
The Godfather Part III - The Philosopher’s Stone
Chapter 1 – Diagon Alley Again
“I’m going out for a bit,” Sirius said, walking into Harry’s room. “Will you be all right?”
Harry was sitting cross-legged on the floor, watching a small, scarlet train running on the complicated track he had built. He looked up at Sirius and rolled his eyes.
“Yes. I’m almost eleven, you know.”
“Really?” Sirius asked, feigning surprise. “You wouldn’t have guessed from the way you behave sometimes.”
Harry picked up a rubber ball and chucked it at him; Sirius retaliated by lifting Harry up entirely and tickling him while he dangled helplessly in the air.
“All – right –” Harry gasped, “I – surrender!”
Grinning, Sirius lowered his godson back onto the ground and made to leave. “I’ll be back in thirty minutes, little one. Please refrain from demolishing the house.”
Lying flat on his back on the floor, still gasping for breath, Harry didn’t even manage to look affronted.
When Sirius re-entered the house half an hour later, a full shopping bag in each hand, he was almost bowled over by a blur with messy black hair.
“Paddy, I’ve got my letter!” Harry shrieked.
Sirius didn’t react immediately, his first priority being to keep himself upright and prevent the purchases from being crushed. When he had steadied himself, he focused on the piece of heavy parchment Harry was waving excitedly, and finally it clicked in his mind.
“Your Hogwarts letter?”
As Harry nodded eagerly, Sirius forgot all about the shopping bags and lifted Harry high into the air. He hugged him tightly and then half jumped, half walked into the living room, where he made a pirouette before putting Harry back on his feet.
With a grin that threatened to rip his face in two, Harry handed the letter to Sirius, who sat down in a comfortable chair to read it.
HOGWARTS SCHOOL OF WITCHCRAFT AND WIZARDRY
Headmaster: Albus Dumbledore
(Order of Merlin, First Class, Grand Sorc., Chf. Warlock,
Supreme Mugwump, International Confed. of Wizards)
Dear Mr Potter,
We are pleased to inform you that you have a place at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Please find enclosed a list of all necessary books and equipment.
Term begins on 1 September. We await your owl by no later than 31 July.
“Congratulations, Harry,” Sirius said, beaming at his godson. “I think I’ll take the afternoon off to celebrate this. Anything special you’d like to do?”
At this, Harry’s smile vanished. Shuffling his feet, he picked up a second piece of parchment from the table.
“I need to get all sorts of stuff,” he murmured. “So I thought that – maybe – we could go to, er, Diagon Alley.”
Sirius had to strain his ears to catch the last bit. Harry was staring at his feet now, and his body was tense. Sirius sighed inwardly. It wasn’t the first time Harry had asked this, even though the answer was always the same, and it hurt Sirius very much to have to disappoint his godson again.
“No, Harry,” he said, and he saw Harry’s shoulders slump. “You know we can’t.”
“It’s not fair,” Harry said to the floor, and then he looked up defiantly. “I’m old enough now; I’m going to Hogwarts in a month.”
“Hogwarts is very different from Diagon Alley, Harry,” Sirius explained. “Hogwarts is one of the safest places in the world.”
Harry didn’t seem to listen. He stamped his feet. “I’m going to be the only one at Hogwarts who’s never been to Diagon Alley.”
“You have been to Diagon Alley, Harry,” Sirius said sharply, “so you know exactly why it’s not safe for you to go.”
Harry cringed, but he still didn’t give up. “With you it’d be safer.”
Sirius shook his head firmly. “It’s an unnecessary risk I don’t want to take.”
Harry relented under his stern glare, but inside Sirius’ mind thoughts were spinning. He didn’t regret his decision today in the slightest, but what about the future? He didn’t need to see the list of supplies to know that, among many other things, Harry would need a wand, and for a wand, he needed to go to Diagon Alley. Sirius wanted Harry to have the very best, which meant they would have to pay a visit to Ollivanders.
Sirius didn’t even consider taking Harry to Diagon Alley without additional protection, wand or no wand, but there were still possibilities – more so than before. He had never wanted to go into public wizarding places with Harry at all, regardless of the security, because he had wanted to prevent fame and nosy wizards from interfering with Harry’s life, but that was beside the point now. Harry would be entering the wizarding world in just over a month, and he should be old enough to cope with it.
The only problem left was the security, but Sirius had an idea about that. Given a few days, he might be able to arrange something...
“Happy birthday, Harry!” Sirius said, emerging into the kitchen carrying two brightly-coloured packages. Harry had been fidgeting ever since he had got up this morning, wondering when he would get his presents, and now his eyes lit up at the sight of the packages. As Sirius deposited the presents on the kitchen table, Harry clearly fought the urge to reach out and grab them.
“I’ve got three presents for my birthday boy,” Sirius declared, and he laughed at the puzzled look on Harry’s face. “One present didn’t like to be wrapped,” he explained. “I tried, honestly, but it didn’t work.”
By now, Harry was almost exploding with curiosity, so Sirius walked into the living room and retrieved the present. Harry’s eyes grew as big as saucers with surprise and admiration as Sirius put the cage on the table.
“You got me an owl!” Harry exclaimed, staring in awe at the snowy white owl in front of him. “He’s beautiful.”
The owl suddenly snapped at him, and Sirius quickly corrected Harry: “She’s beautiful.”
“Oops, sorry,” Harry said, grinning. He stroked the owl with one finger through the bars of the cage. “You’ll forgive me, won’t you?”
Harry couldn’t take his eyes off his new owl, and Sirius watched them for a few minutes before gently drawing Harry’s attention back.
“Shall we let her out now, Harry?” he suggested. “She hasn’t been out of her cage since I bought her, so I’m sure she’d like to fly around for a bit.
“Will she be able to find her way back?” Harry asked concerned, while Sirius opened the window.
The owl turned to her new owner reproachfully, clearly offended that he thought so little of her intelligence. Harry grinned sheepishly and then answered his own question. “I think she will.”
When the owl had left, Harry finally remembered that there were two other presents waiting for him. Smiling, Sirius handed him a heavy, square package. Harry quickly unwrapped it and found himself holding a large photo album. He looked up to Sirius, a curious frown on his face. “I don’t have a camera...”
“You don’t need one,” Sirius replied. “This album has already been filled.” As his godson opened the album, he explained, “I made copies of all of your favourite pictures, so you can have them with you at Hogwarts.”
A happy smile split Harry’s face as he looked at the photographs: one of his parents holding him as a baby, one of his father at Hogwarts with his friends, one of his parents’ wedding...
“Thank you,” Harry said, looking up. “I hadn’t even realised – but I would have missed them –”
Sirius squeezed his shoulders affectionately before picked up the final present. It was a large, flat package.
“I’m afraid the other two presents have been in vain,” he said, “because this one will make you forget about them instantly.”
“Impossible,” Harry declared, but his eyes shone with eagerness as he took the package from Sirius. It turned out to be a large piece of parchment, which read:
Diagon Alley Voucher
Worth one day in Diagon Alley with the godfather of your choice.
“Diagon Alley!” Harry squealed. He looked up to Sirius, excitement radiating from his face. “Today – are we going today?”
Sirius said nothing, but pointed to the gift token. There was a footnote.
Only valid on 31 July.
Harry was practically bouncing in his seat. “Can we go now?”
“First you finish your breakfast,” Sirius ordered. “And there’s no need to stuff your mouth like that, we can’t go until nine anyway.”
Harry looked horrified at having to wait another twenty minutes. “Why?”
“Firstly because the shops aren’t open yet,” Sirius answered, “but more importantly, I asked a few friends of mine to be around today, to keep an eye out and help in case anything happens. They won’t be there until nine.”
Harry opened his mouth to say something, but, seeing Sirius’ frown, he closed it again and swallowed first. “Is that to make it safe?”
Sirius nodded. “You know it usually isn’t safe for you to go to such places, but with half a dozen fully-grown wizards around, not much can happen.” Harry looked a bit doubtful, and Sirius guessed why at once. “Don’t worry, you won’t see them. They’ll stay at a distance, so it’ll just be the two of us.”
Harry’s face brightened immediately, and with a glance at the clock he started shoving the rest of his breakfast into his mouth.
Sirius smiled and calmly packed a few things in a bag, pretending not to notice that Harry was glancing at the clock every two minutes. Finally it was nine o’clock and Harry shot from his chair.
“Come on, Paddy,” he called as he rushed into the living room.
When Sirius found him in front of the fireplace a few moments later, however, his grin had disappeared, and he was staring at the fire nervously.
Sirius laid a hand on his shoulder. “It will be all right, Harry. I’m with you.”
Harry nodded, but doubt was still visible on his face. Sirius made a mental note to take Harry straight back home if his memories of that horrible day three years ago became too much at any point.
“Wait twenty seconds,” Sirius said, grabbing a handful of Floo Powder. “I’ll be waiting for you on the other side.” He tossed the powder into the flames and stepped into the grate. “Diagon Alley!”
He landed in a crouch in the Floo House of Diagon Alley. He turned around immediately, brushing the soot off his robes, and started to count down the seconds himself. He always asked Harry to wait twenty seconds when they Flooed somewhere, and Harry always counted too fast. Today was a new record: Harry arrived twelve seconds after Sirius.
Harry seemed to cope well with his re-acquaintance with the Floo House; he looked around curiously as Sirius brushed off his robes, and then he asked, “Are we going to Quality Quidditch Supplies?”
Sirius laughed. “You know that first-years can’t take their own broomstick, don’t you?”
“I just want to look,” Harry said, looking up pleadingly at his godfather.
“Well, all right,” Sirius gave in. “But we can’t stay there all day, we have lots to buy.”
Harry barely listened to that last part; he was already pulling Sirius outside, chattering about the new Nimbus Two Thousand.
When they were walking on the cobbled road, however, Harry fell silent. Sirius closed his hand around Harry’s smaller one, silently letting him know that it was safe.
“Here I heard Uncle Ted,” Harry said tonelessly. “I think. It looks different now.” He looked over his shoulder. “It seemed a much longer walk then.”
“You were smaller,” Sirius said softly, “and nervous that you might get caught.”
Harry nodded. “When I heard Uncle Ted, I started running ... until that corner, there...”
Sirius squeezed the hand he was holding. “Yes, that’s Knockturn Alley.”
Harry stared silently at the corner as they approached, but just before they passed Knockturn Alley he turned his head to the other side. Sirius felt Harry’s body pressing into his as they walked past the dark, gloomy street, and for one moment he was uncertain whether this had been a good idea after all. But as soon as they had left Knockturn Alley behind, the tension dissipated from Harry’s body, and a small but genuine smile lit his face at the sight of Quality Quidditch Supplies.
Several boys Harry’s age were pressing their noses against the window.
“Look – the new Nimbus Two Thousand!” one of them said excitedly. “The fastest ever!”
Harry let out a small gasp and tugged at Sirius’ hand, urging him on. He didn’t quite meet the boys in front of the window, but stayed a foot behind them and craned his neck to get a glimpse of the Nimbus. Since Harry had always been rather small for his age, this tactic wasn’t very successful.
“Come,” Sirius whispered into Harry’s ear. “We’re going to look at it from inside.”
Harry grinned happily at him and followed him inside. They walked over to the window, and there it was. With a smooth, gleaming handle, ending in a slim, symmetrical bundle of well-kept twigs, and carefully laid down in the centre of the display, the Nimbus Two Thousand seemed superior to any other broom. Harry stepped forward with a look of absolute awe on his face.
“Don’t touch it,” Sirius warned. “It wouldn’t do to be thrown out of the shop now, would it?”
Harry gave him a small smile and then turned his attention back to the broomstick, keeping his hands firmly at his sides.
For minutes, Harry stared at the Nimbus, and so did the boys outside. They were so focused on the broomstick that they didn’t even notice Harry – until one of them, pointing out the most brilliant features of the Nimbus to the boy next to him, happened to catch sight of the black-haired boy at the other side of the window. His eyes widened.
Harry looked up at the same moment as the rest of the boys outside. He seemed to be frozen to the spot as the boys goggled and pointed at him and loudly started to discuss whether he was the real Harry Potter or not.
Sirius took a few swift steps towards him, wrapped an arm around his small shoulders and steered him away from the window.
“It can’t be him,” they heard one of the boys declare. “Harry Potter doesn’t have a dad.”
Harry’s face was bright red as they walked to the back of the shop, where the boys couldn’t see them. Sirius tried to cheer him up by pointing out a handy little broom compass, but Harry could only manage a weak smile.
“I didn’t think –” he began. “I didn’t expect –” He trailed off, staring helplessly at a set of bright orange Chudley Cannons robes, without actually seeing them.
“You didn’t think it would be like this,” Sirius supplied. As Harry nodded, he rubbed his godson’s shoulders and said softly, “I warned you –”
“I didn’t believe it,” Harry cut him off. “It’s sort of hard to believe that people’d recognise me at first sight when they’ve never seen me before, and then point and shout and – they were so rude! I mean, they could’ve come to me and asked who I was instead of just staring at me like that and talking as if I wasn’t there – I can’t believe it.”
Sirius noticed Harry was trembling and gently pushed him down to sit on the floor.
“Yes, they were a little rude,” he said as he knelt in front of Harry, “but it’s not so unexpected. What would you do if you saw Ben Hurtman in this shop?”
Harry frowned. “I would – all right, maybe I’d point and shout – but it’s not the same! He’s a world famous Keeper!”
“And you are known in the entire wizarding world as the person who stopped the war.”
“I was just a baby, I don’t even remember it!”
Sirius smiled despite himself. “Yes, and I want you to keep that in mind. Most children your age have grown up knowing your name, but sooner or later, they’ll discover that you are just you. That is what counts.”
Harry looked somewhat relieved, but he was hesitant to go outside. He wandered through the shop, pointing out things to Sirius without true interest. When he showed Sirius an Appleby Arrows cap for the third time, even though he wasn’t actually a fan of the Arrows, Sirius decided that it was enough. It took him a few minutes to convince Harry that it was really time to go on, and then he ushered him off to Madam Malkin’s, the robe shop at the opposite side of the street.
One other boy was being fitted up. He had a round, pink face, and he grinned at Harry as he came in.
“Hogwarts, too, dear?” a friendly witch asked Harry. “Stand on the footstool, please, I’ll be with you in a minute.”
Harry stepped onto a footstool next to the round-faced boy.
“Hi,” the boy said, turning slightly towards Harry on his stool and swaying dangerously. “I’m Neville.”
“I’m Harry,” Harry said. He turned red and glanced nervously at Sirius, but Neville didn’t seem to notice anything unusual about his name.
“Are you new at Hogwarts, too?” Neville asked. “D’you have a wand yet?” Without waiting for an answer, he continued, “I just bought one. It took me half an hour to find a good one, and Mr Ollivander is really creepy.”
The witch returned to fit Harry up, and Sirius wandered off into the shop to have a look at the more fancy robes.
“My father is buying me potions ingredients now,” Neville rattled on. “I bet I’ll be really bad at Potions. I got a Junior Potions Kit for my birthday last year, but I managed to make my cauldron explode the very next day. And –”
“We’re done, Neville,” a woman’s voice interrupted. “Oh no – look out –”
Sirius turned just in time to see Neville trip over his footstool and crash into the floor.
“Are you all right?” Harry asked worriedly.
As an answer, Neville scrambled to his feet, grinning as broadly as before. “Don’t worry, that happens five times a day. I’m really clumsy.”
A round-faced, rosy-cheeked woman who could only be his mother smiled down at him. “He’ll never be a sportsman, but my Neville has other talents.”
As they walked to the door, Neville waved cheerily at Harry, and Sirius was sure that if his mother hadn’t reminded him to look in front of him, he would have tripped over the threshold.
Harry seemed much happier now that he had talked to a boy who wasn’t awestruck at the sight of him, and he didn’t object to walking through Diagon Alley. They visited the apothecary for potion ingredients, Callie’s Collapsible and Conventional Cauldrons for a cauldron – Harry wanted to have a gold one, but Sirius refused to buy it – and Flourish and Blotts for a first year set of books. They had lunch in the Leaky Cauldron and then went to buy parchment, a telescope and a set of scales. Finally, only the most important item on Harry’s school list was left, and they headed for Ollivanders.
The shop was just as dark, dusty and gloomy as Sirius remembered it from when he had bought a wand. Harry’s hand clutched his robes from behind as they entered, and Sirius felt quite uncomfortable himself as the large, pale eyes of Ollivander set upon him.
“Mr Black. Yew, fourteen inches, rather stiff, with a core of dragon heartstring.”
Sirius blinked. How did Ollivander know that? Surely he didn’t remember it? Staring perplexed at the shop owner, Sirius wondered whether he was entirely human – maybe he had implanted a computer chip in his head, like Harry’s friend from next door was always talking about.
“I remember every single wand I’ve sold, Mr Black,” Ollivander continued, as if he had read Sirius’ thoughts. “It is useful knowledge – the wand characterises the wizard after all. Now, to what do I owe this visit? Don’t tell me you’ve broken your wand – or worse, lost it.”
“No, I haven’t,” Sirius said, rolling his eyes. “I’m here for my godson.” He stepped aside, so Harry, who had been hiding behind his back, came into view.
Ollivander took one step forwards and gazed intently at Harry. “Ah – Mr Potter.” He sounded surprised, which, Sirius thought, proved that he was human after all. “I did not – I expected you, of course, but I hadn’t expected you with – ah, it doesn’t matter. Which is your wand hand?”
“Er – right,” Harry said, looking sideways at Sirius with wide eyes, his face expressing clearly what he thought of Mr Ollivander. Sirius privately agreed: the man was completely crazy.
A magical tape measure measured every measurable bit of Harry and a few bits that weren’t, until Ollivander, who had collected a large stack of boxes from the shelves, told it to stop.
“Try this one, Mr Potter,” he said, taking a wand from one of the boxes. “Beechwood and dragon heartstring, nine inches. Nice and flexible.”
Harry took it eagerly, his eyes glinting, and he drew a large circle in the air – but nothing happened.
“Not that one,” Ollivander stated, opening another box. “Here, maple and phoenix feather. Seven inches. Quite whippy.”
Sirius, anticipating another enthusiastic wave, had taken a step back to get outside Harry’s range, but Ollivander snatched the wand back before Harry could properly try it.
“No, no. Try this one. Ebony and unicorn hair, eight and a half inches, springy. Go on, go on, try it out.”
Wand after wand Harry tried. His shoulders slumped, and he looked steadily more hopeless with every new wand that was presented to him, but Mr Ollivander had a maniacal glint in his eyes and handed Harry the wands faster and faster.
Then Ollivander froze. Harry dropped the arm he was extending to take the next wand, and Sirius wondered if Ollivander would now give up on Harry. But no, he looked thoughtful instead. He caressed the wand he was holding for a moment and his pale eyes narrowed.
“I wonder, now – yes, why not – unusual combination, holly and phoenix feather, eleven inches, nice and supple.”
Harry took the wand. His face lit up as he raised the wand above his head, and when he brought it swishing down through the dusty air, a stream of red and gold sparks shot from the end like a firework, throwing dancing spots of light on the walls.
Harry let out a shout of triumph as he turned to Sirius, his face shining. Sirius grinned back at him and gave him a brief hug.
“Very good, oh yes, indeed,” Mr Ollivander said, his pale eyes unusually bright. “Well, well, well, how curious ... how very curious.”
Harry and Sirius exchanged mystified glances as Ollivander put the wand back into its box and wrapped it in brown paper, still muttering, “Curious ... curious ...”
“What’s curious?” Sirius asked, trying hard to sound polite.
Ollivander turned around, fixing him with his pale stare for a moment before moving to Harry with a few swift steps and extending a long, white finger to Harry’s forehead. Harry squirmed as Ollivander touched his scar.
“Your scar – I sold the wand that did it, Mr Potter. Thirteen and a half inches. Yew and phoenix feather. It so happens that the phoenix whose tail feather is in that wand gave another feather – just one other. It is very curious indeed that you are destined for the wand that has this feather inside, while its brother gave you that scar.”
Harry swallowed visibly.
“Yes, thirteen and a half inches. Very powerful wand, very powerful ... and in the wrong hands... Curious indeed how those things happen. The wand chooses the wizard, remember... I think we must expect great things from you, Mr Potter... After all, He Who Must Not Be Named did great things – terrible, yes, but great.”
Feeling as if his blood had turned to ice, Sirius silently paid seven Galleons for the wand and got Harry outside as quickly as possible.
“I’ve never had such a weird birthday,” Harry commented as they walked down the street. “At least I have a wand now, and I don’t really care that it’s related to Voldemort’s.”
But Sirius did care. Ollivander’s words had reminded him of the prophecy made many years ago about Harry and Voldemort. What did it mean that Harry was destined to defeat the person who owned a wand so similar to Harry’s own?
Sirius didn’t have much time to brood about this, though, because Harry dragged him off to Gambol and Japes after having promised to keep the tricks in his trunk until he went to Hogwarts.
Sirius told Harry sternly that he wasn’t allowed to spend more than two Galleons in the joke shop, but that was a miscalculation. They left the shop with an absurd amount of articles, ranging from Burping Balloons (five for one Knut) to Stinging Soap (two Sickles for a bar).
They walked up and down Diagon Alley one more time, admiring all the shops, and then they finally went home. Just in time, because there was only half an hour left before their guests were due to arrive, and the birthday dinner still had to be prepared.
In hindsight, Sirius realised he should have become suspicious when Harry volunteered to set the table, on his birthday no less. But Sirius was tired after spending the whole day in Diagon Alley, his head was spinning with renewed worries about the prophecy, and he needed to concentrate on cooking.
Even that, however, didn’t explain how he could have missed Harry’s devilish grin as Sirius reached for his glass halfway through dinner. He must have been too distracted by his cousin Andromeda and her daughter, as Nymphadora talked about a prank she had pulled at school and her mother looked steadily more disapproving. Nymphadora had livened up the always boring History of Magic lesson by morphing into something that resembled a troll and starting to re-enact everything Professor Binns was telling them. The whole class had been in stitches, and poor Professor Binns had had the fright of his life – or rather, after-life – when he spotted a troll in his classroom.
Both Ted and Remus were smiling with pained expressions as they listened; they obviously found it very amusing, but they tried to hide their laughter for Andromeda’s sake. Their concentration was broken, however, when Sirius’ fork collided with his firmly closed lips, causing the food to drop onto the front of his robes, and both of them burst out laughing.
Sirius knew at once what had happened. It didn’t take a genius to figure out that some of the Sticky Sticking Solution from Gambol and Japes had found its way onto his glass, and from his glass onto his lips. He threw a murderous glare at Harry – who was doubled up with laughter and didn’t even notice – and stormed from the room to get his wand.
By the time he returned, his lips free of Sticky Sticking Solution, Harry had put on his most innocent face and appeared to have found allies in Remus and Ted.
“Aw, come on, Sirius,” Ted said as Sirius opened his mouth to speak, “it’s his birthday. Let him have a little fun.”
“It was rather funny, you know,” Remus added.
“You would have done the same,” Ted said with a bright smile.
“Except that your stiff, rule-abiding parents didn’t let you go to Gambol and Japes at all,” Remus said.
“That didn’t stop me from going anyway!” Sirius retorted. He only remembered that he was supposed to act like a responsible parent when Remus grinned widely.
“Exactly our point. Now you don’t want to be like your parents and lock Harry up in his room for the next month, do you?”
“I never lock Harry up,” Sirius said indignantly. “And he’s certainly allowed to have some fun. However, the rule –”
“Rules are there to be broken,” Remus interrupted him cheerfully.
Sirius shook his head. “Not this time. There’s a reason why Harry isn’t allowed to play magic tricks in this house, and he knows it, don’t you, Harry?”
Harry tried to look oblivious, but he flushed and finally nodded. “Because of the Muggles,” he murmured.
“Exactly,” Sirius said, giving him a small smile. “Harry’s Muggle friends come over here all the time. Imagine what would happen if one of them used this glass at Harry’s birthday party tomorrow.” He paused, but no one protested. “Harry, I’m taking away your bag of jokes. You can have it back when you go to Hogwarts.”
Harry glared at him for a moment, but then he turned to Nymphadora with a grin. “So what did Professor Binns do?”
Nymphadora’s eyes lit up, Andromeda frowned, and everything was back to normal – except for the fact that Sirius charmed his glass clean every time he wanted to drink from it for the rest of the evening.