Scion of Gryffindor
5 - Gryffindor Keep
Harry / Tonks ship
Where Harry was to live, as it turned out, had a very unexpected answer.
The four persona non grata magicians had spent the night in Grimmauld Place on the top floor. The following morning after an uninspired breakfast (Molly was not staying at Grimmauld), a falcon swooped in through the chimney and landed on Harry's shoulder, going out of its way to not dig its talons into his shoulder.
"A falcon?" Remus said in wonder.
"What's so strange about a falcon?" Harry asked, admiring the bird as well as he could from such a close perspective. "I mean, I've seen birds other than owls used before to carry post."
"Falcons, eagles, and hawks can do it, obviously, but they're very uncommon. It takes a very powerful, noble personality to befriend one."
Nodding absently at the new information, Harry finally got the scroll off of the falcon's leg and read it.
This parchment is a portkey. Tap it with your wand and say, "Take me home," and it will bring you to my Keep. As my heir, you are entitled to it. On top of that, I'm encouraging you to move here permanently with any and all of your new bodyguards. Moving to Gryffindor Keep would not only improve your security, it would also provide you space away from Albus's Order.
I am waiting for you there.
Please give the messenger your acceptance or regrets.
Well, that explains the falcon. But how did he know about my hiring Remus, Tonks, and Kingsley?
Harry looked up from the note with a grin. "Housing is being taken care of." He turned to the falcon. "Thank you. We'll be along later this morning."
The falcon seemed to nod before swooping back out through the fireplace.
His three guards didn't appear to be all that impressed with Harry's announcement. "What do you mean, our housing is taken care of?"
Harry handed the parchment to Remus.
He looked up from the page a moment later. "It's blank." Tonks and Kingsley, trying to read the letter, nodded agreement.
Harry looked over and saw the words still sitting innocently. "You can't read that?"
"No . . ." Remus slowly said.
Kingsley gently took the parchment from Remus's hand and laid it down. Both he and Tonks subjected the thing to several revealing spells each before they gave up.
"A blood link is the only thing left that could produce script that Harry can see that we can't," Kingsley concluded with a shrug.
"So only my direct ancestors or descendants can read that?" Harry asked, remembering the information on blood links he'd researched after the ritual that had resurrected Voldemort. From what he could remember, diluting his own blood with what had been in Wormtail's hand precluded the possibility that Voldemort was the sender of this letter, fortunately.
Remus nodded in answer to Harry's spoken question.
"Well, then there's only one person who could have sent it to me, right?"
All three of them stared blankly.
"Sorry, forgot you three don't know. For the moment, I'll just tell you that I trust this source implicitly. Once we're to a more secure place, I'll explain everything to the three of you."
Kingsley frowned deeply. "Harry, as your bodyguard, I must say that this could be a very bad idea. I don't know who sent that or where it will take you. You say the source is trustworthy, but I just don't know."
Harry thought about it for a moment. He could tell them, of course, but he wasn't convinced that Dumbledore didn't have a way of listening to their conversation. Then he realized that with what they'd already said, it was a moot point anyway. "Gryffindor."
Remus blinked in astonishment. "But he -" Remus cut himself off. "No. We'll discuss it later."
Harry nodded agreeably. "The note's a portkey. Let's get packed."
"Take me home," Harry whispered less than an hour later.
The portkey deposited the four in an entrance hall.
Harry quickly picked himself off the floor, oriented himself, and looked around. "Grandfather!" he exclaimed happily.
"Harry!" Godric replied, echoing Harry's enthusiasm. They rushed together and hugged.
Remus was staring. "Uh, Harry? You are aware that your grandfather died long before you were born . . ."
"Oh, I'm not really his grandfather," Godric said cheerfully. "Or rather, I'm his," he started counting them off on his fingers, "Great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - great - grandfather."
The three others stared. Harry laughed.
Godric shook his head sadly. "Moony, a former Marauder falling for such a simple prank. Padfoot and Prongs would be disappointed."
Remus's expression shifted from stunned to outraged.
"Wait!" Harry barked, keeping Remus from going off on a verbal tirade. "Guys, this is Godric Gryffindor. Remus, he spent time with Dad after his sixteenth birthday, so he really DOES know Padfoot and Prongs."
"Godric Gryffindor," Kingsley stated skeptically.
"Yes, Mr. Shacklebolt, Godric Gryffindor," Gryffindor agreed with a smile.
Trying to head off the confusion, Harry began the explanation of how he and Godric had already met.
It took some time, but eventually all of the questions had been answered — if not in full, at least to their satisfaction. Godric then took the four on a tour of Gryffindor Keep.
It was roughly the size of a mansion but built more like a defensible castle. Everyone had their own bedrooms and attached bathrooms. Godric had kept the fittings and plumbing up to contemporary standards, Harry was pleased to see. There was also a dueling chamber, a couple rooms that could be used as cells (one of which Remus immediately claimed for his use during the full moons), and all the other miscellaneous rooms of a mansion-sized dwelling. It was also completely empty and very dusty.
Godric shrugged after Tonks pointed this out. "It's not like I need house-elves living here to keep it up."
Harry had a sudden thought. "Dobby!"
Dobby cracked in. The little elf looked around for a long moment before turning to Harry. "Master Harry Potter sir called for Dobby?"
Harry went to one knee, so he'd be closer to eye level with the elf. "Yes, Dobby. I am moving here, Gryffindor Keep. If you are willing, would you consent to come and work for me?"
Dobby squealed at such a tone that Remus winced in pain. Bouncing and clapping his hands in glee, the elf said, "YES, Master Harry Potter sir! Dobby is being very honored to be asked to work for Master Harry Potter sir!"
"Okay, a couple ground rules, Dobby. I am not 'Master.' I am not 'Sir.' I'm Harry. Got that?"
Dobby looked stricken. He opened his mouth a few times, but nothing came out. He frowned deeply for a moment before slowly shaking his head. "I cannot be doing that, Master Harry. I is being unable to not call Master Harry as Master Harry, Master Harry Potter, Master Potter, Lord Harry, Lord Harry Potter -"
Harry held up a hand to stop the elf's list of possible titles. "Master Harry will have to do then, I suppose. In case you don't know them, these three are Nymphadora Tonks, Remus Lupin, and Kingsley Shacklebolt. They're technically my employees, but more importantly, they're my friends. I expect they'll be living here as well."
Kingsley shook his head. "I have a home, wife, and daughter, Harry. I'd much prefer to live with them. If our security is threatened, then we can talk about moving here, but for now, I'd like to leave things as they are."
Harry nodded. He was mildly ashamed to realize that he didn't know Kingsley was married, let alone had a daughter. He turned to Tonks, Remus, and Kingsley. "I was presumptive to think you'd want to live here. My apologies."
Remus waved it off. "I'd love to, if you'll have me. It'll be a damn sight better than that grim, old place."
Tonks smirked at Remus's pun before she turned to Harry and shrugged. "If you're offering free lodging, I'll take it. I'm not tied down anywhere."
Harry turned back to Dobby. "There you have it. I have a Gringotts vault that contains some furniture, so we'll have to figure out how to get that here. And then later, we'll figure out an account so you can buy things in my name."
Dobby was looking at Godric curiously. "You is a ghost."
Godric nodded. "Indeed, Dobby out of Woorby by Kirby. I am Godric Gryffindor."
Eyes wide, Dobby bowed very low. "Lord Godric Gryffindor sir, Dobby is being very pleased to be meeting you."
Godric sighed. "Seeing as I'm dead, Harry is the current Lord Gryffindor. If you must call me something beyond 'Godric,' then Master Godric will do."
Dobby bowed again. He turned to Harry. "Master Harry, it is being the time for lunch, but Dobby is very ashamed that he is not being able to prepare meal for Master Harry, Master Remus, Master Kingsy, and Mistress Nimma." He looked around for a moment before grabbing one of his own ears and twisting it painfully.
"Stop! Dobby, another rule: No punishing yourself. Ever. Understood?"
Dobby's large eyes were leaking equally large tears as he fell to his knees. "Master Harry Potter sir is greatest wizard ever! He is mostest kindest greatest wizard."
"Sweet Merlin, what have you gotten us into, Harry?" Tonks muttered lowly enough that only Remus heard her.
Harry sighed and rolled his eyes at the elf. "Dobby, please stop with the groveling, okay? Now, considering the state of the Keep -"
"Hey!" Godric objected.
"- I wasn't expecting to eat here."
"I'll get us something from the Leaky Cauldron," Kingsley offered. Harry reached for his money pouch, but Kingsley raised a hand. "I'll flip for this one, Harry. You're paying me well anyway." With a bemused grin in place, Kingsley walked toward the entrance hall to apparate out.
Remus and Tonks headed toward the dining hall to conjure table, chairs, and so forth for their meal. The conjured furniture wouldn't last, but it was better than eating while sitting on the floor. Dobby scurried around in a cleaning frenzy.
Suddenly not having anything to do, Harry wandered over to Godric. "Grandfather?"
"Hmm?" Godric responded, watching Dobby in amusement.
"Can you tell me about my parents?"
Godric blinked and looked down at Harry. "That's right. As good a man as Sirius was, his story-telling skills were limited to recounting pranks, weren't they? Well, how about I tell you about James and Lily's first date? It was the first Hogsmeade weekend of their seventh year, and this new tea shop had just opened up in town . . ."