- Character Bashing
- Death-Minor Character
- Discussion-Child Abuse
- Hate Crimes
- Alternate Universe
- Fix It
July 2007 Paris, France.
Tony DiNozzo looked down at the letter that he had received from the Potter Family lawyer the day before. Lily had included it with her will. While the official Potter will had been sealed by the British Ministry, Lily’s lawyer had had another copy. It had been enough for the British Minister for Magic to grant Tony temporary custody while the strange circumstances surrounding the official will were being investigated. Tony still had to be declared Harry’s permanent guardian, but for the moment no one was going to take Harry away. Potter
He hadn’t been able to bring himself to read Lily’s later yet. He felt like a coward, but this was the last letter he’d ever have from her. A part of him wanted to put it aside for a while so that he could savor the anticipation. You’re being silly. Just read it.
Tony started to open the letter when Harry’s nanny elf popped into the room. Tony turned to look at her. He had finally learned not to startle when Posey Harry’s nanny elf popped into a room. She wore a pretty glowered sundress that Tony had bought for her.
“Master Harry be Harry is waking for the day,” she told him. “Posey come see if you want to get him his breakfast.”
Tony grinned and stood. “Absolutely.” Tony enjoyed having his meals with Harry. His own father had never been around for meals, especially after Tony’s mother had died. Tony was determined to be nothing like Senior.
He put the letter away carefully in the top drawer of his nightstand. Then he picked up the book on History of Magic he was reading and went across the hall to Harry’s room. Tony had been staying with Agnes for over two months now. Tony had expected her to gently suggest he get his own place, but so far Agnes seemed happy to have them there. She had even insisted on redecorating Harry’s room for him.
Tony walked in and saw Harry was standing up in his crib. He saw Tony and a huge smile bloomed across his face. “Tone!” he called out holding out his arms.
The sight made Tony feel like his heart was going to burst. He didn’t know it was possible to love another person this much and in such a short amount of time.
“Did you have a good night’s sleep, Sweetheart?” he asked the little boy as he picked him up.
Harry grinned at him. “Yes! Good sleeps,” he replied. “Saw Mama and Dada.”
“Yeah, you dreamed about your parents huh?”
Harry nodded. “Give kisses.” He reached out for his snitch toy and Tony handed it to him. “That’s good, baby. Sometimes I dream about your mom too.”
Harry nodded, but Tony wasn’t sure he understood.
“Are you hungry?” he asked, and Harry nodded again emphatically making Tony chuckle.
“Okay let’s get dressed and get something to eat.”
“Breakies,” Harry agreed clapping his hands happily. Harry loved food. Tony hated to think of him being deprived, but he made sure Harry always had his meals on time. He was determined Harry would never want for anything again. A little spoiling was good for a kid, right?
Tony helped Harry get dressed in a t-shirt and slacks and an adorable little green robe. Tony was glad they had decided to go shopping a toddler went through a ton of clothes, and while the house elves took care of the laundry. Tony knew that wouldn’t last forever. Tony wore a robe himself more often than not. He felt a little silly, but it was important he get used to them. He’d need to fit in for Harry’s sake.
Tony was still uncomfortable with the idea of house elves. Agnes had explained the symbiotic relationship between the little elves and wizards. It was a mutually beneficial arrangement, but to Tony, it still seemed too much like slavery. Still, the house elves seemed happy enough, and he knew Agnes took good care of them.
The t-shirt Harry was wearing had a magical animal on it, something called a hippogriff. It looked like a griffin to Tony, but apparently, this was a completely different animal. There was still so much Tony had to learn. Every day was filled with new discoveries. Tony was never bored; that was for sure.
As always breakfast was a messy affair. After they were done eating Tony took Harry outside to play. It had been raining the last few days, and Tony had kept Harry inside. Today had dawned bright and sunny, and Tony wanted to take advantage before the day got too hot.
He and Harry were rolling a ball between them. Though Harry kept making the ball fly toward him and then occasionally, he’d hit Tony in the head with it. Harry thought this was hilarious. Agnes had told him that such magic use was normal. Harry showed a bit more control than most children his age apparently. Normal or not it still freaked Tony out a little. He was proud too. Though no one would tell him how he could prevent Harry from apparating. Everyone assured him that Harry was too young, but Tony still had the occasional nightmare about his little boy disappearing into thin air.
There was a house elf watering the grass and Harry decided it would be a great idea to jump through the spray. He was having such a good time; Tony didn’t have the heart to stop him. Tony watched him laughing just as much as Harry. Tony was thinking about going back inside to give Harry a bath when Agnes came out into the garden.
“Aggie,” Harry said happily, and he rolled the ball toward her. Agnes bent down and caught it and rolled it back to Harry. She smiled at him, but it didn’t reach her eyes.
Tony stood looking at her with concern. “What’s wrong,” he asked quietly. He knew Agnes well enough know to know when she was worried.
Agnes sighed. “I’m so sorry, Tony. I don’t know how this happened. I was promised your guardianship of Harry would be kept quiet, but I suppose it was only a matter of time before it got out.”
She held out a folded piece of paper. Tony realized it was a newspaper as he unfolded it. He looked at the name The Daily Prophet.
“What is this,” he asked. He looked at the headline Muggle Cousin Declared Harry Potter’s New Guardian, and then underneath Harry Potter living in France!
Underneath there was a photo of Harry, Lily, and James shortly after Harry’s birth. They were smiling and waving at the camera. As he watched the Lily in the picture winked at him. He resisted the urge to touch it. Lily looked so alive, and yet not. Tony didn’t know if he’d ever get used to Wizarding photographs.
He quickly scanned the article. It was full of a bunch of hyperbole and supposition and very few facts. Apparently, the idea that Harry Potter was being raised by a muggle and in France no less was horrific and should not be born. The writer, some guy named Artemis Skeeter, seemed particularly offended by the notion that Harry Potter was being corrupted by nasty muggle and French influences. It wasn’t clear which was worse. The writer worried that Harry might become a French citizen, and go to someplace called Beaxbaton’s rather than Hogwarts. This was apparently a travesty unlike any other. Those names meant nothing to Tony.
Whoever Artemis Skeeter was Tony would love to have a few words with him.
Tony looked up at Agnes “What the hell?” he asked. “What is this? This guy thinks I’m going to ruin Harry’s lie. He doesn’t even know anything about me.” The prejudice many witches and wizards had against non-magical people infuriated Tony.
“It’s the British Wizarding newspaper. Though I think that’s a generous term for it. In reality, it’s more than a combination of gossip rag and ministry propaganda.”
“I can see that. They apparently know about me, though they don’t seem to have my name.”
“Yes, it’s only a matter of time, however, before they get your name, and Dumbledore finds out exactly where you are staying,” Agnes said grimly. “I will find out how this happened, Tony. I had hoped to protect you for a little while longer. There is so much you have to learn before you can function in our world.”
Agnes and Kelly had been giving him a crash course in Wizarding politics and customs to prepare him for life in the Wizarding world. Tony was a fast learner, but there was a lot to take in.
“Harry is safer here than almost anywhere else, but now that people know that Harry is in France, he could be in danger.
Tony’s fist clenched around the newspaper, and it crumpled. “I won’t let anyone hurt Harry. Not while I’m still breathing.”
Agnes nodded. She reached out and gently loosened Tony’s fingers taking the newspaper from him. “I won’t let anything happen to either of you. Unfortunately, though we no longer have the luxury of time. Dumbledore is coming. He will make his move soon. And he will do whatever it takes to gain control of Harry.”
Tony looked out over the garden thinking. “I know I can’t fully protect Harry in your world without magic I’m at a disadvantage. I know I need your help. However you should know I will find a way to stop Dumbledore, and I don’t care what I have to do. That man will never get his hands on my son.”