- Draco Malfoy Harry Potter
- Alternate Universe General
- The Harry Potter at Hogwarts Years
- Philosopher's Stone Chamber of Secrets Quidditch Through the Ages Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
Published: 04/18/2004Updated: 06/08/2006Words: 97,140Chapters: 21Hits: 109,125
They Shook Hands: Year Two (Original Version)
- Story Summary:
- Harry Potter's holiday with the Muggles has been dreadful. He wants nothing more than to return to Hogwarts, but when he is rescued by a masked wizard in a black robe, it sets off a chain reaction of disasters. Things are no calmer at school as an ancient legend comes to life and a deadly monster stalks the halls. The new Defense professor boasts that he will end the threat, but can even the magical might of the famed Gilderoy Lockhart prevail against the Heir of Slytherin? Nobody knows who it could be, but the prime suspect is none other than Harry himself!
Chapter 14 - Recognition
- Chapter Summary:
- Harry is troubled, and the school is all abuzz with rumors and speculation. Another attack leaves the castle stunned, and Professor Snape comes asking questions. One of Harry's secrets comes out, Jenna and Harry make fun of Draco, the choir rounds off the year with a Christmas performance, and Percy Weasley finally gets what he deserves.
- Author's Note:
- All chapters are posted on Schnoogle. All chapters and some juicy extras are posted on
They Shook Hands : Year Two
An alternate (but realistic!) universe Harry Potter fic
Chapter Fourteen - Recognition
Harry couldn't sleep at all that night. Amidst the snores from his room mates, he lay in bed staring up at the canopy. The events of the night kept playing over and over again in his head; he couldn't erase Finch-Fletchley's accusing eyes. Draco's revelation about their House's Founder was one more piece of the grand puzzle; all the evidence now pointed directly to Harry.
The Sorting Hat had been so eager to place him in this House: could he possibly be the Heir of Slytherin? He knew nothing about his father's family. The Muggles had always forbidden him to ask about his parents. He was lucky to even know their names. Now his lack of knowledge was proving detrimental. Cursing the Muggles' name, he vowed to learn as much as he could about his lineage.
But the whole idea was ridiculous! Harry certainly wasn't turning a horrible monster loose on the school. He wasn't responsible for changing students into stone.
Harry rolled onto his stomach and punched futilely at his pillow. He was wide awake, and sleep would not come. Frustrated, he threw back the covers and went to sit in the window seat. Curling his knees up to his chin, he watched the moonlight reflect off the rippling water of the lake. The peace and tranquility of the night soothed him, and his mates found him in the morning, fast asleep in the sill.
* * *
The castle woke on Tuesday morning to find the first snow falling heavily. In addition to signalling the start of the holiday season, outdoors classes were cancelled, including the second years' Herbology lesson. Professor Sprout wanted to fit the Mandrakes with tiny hats, socks, and scarves, a tricky, time-consuming task that she would entrust to no one but herself. It was vital that the Mandrakes grow as rapidly and as healthfully as possible now that they were needed to restore those who had been Petrified.
Harry was too distracted to learn the new card game a couple of fourth years wanted to teach the younger Slytherins. He prowled around the common room until Draco finally told him to go soak his head. Miffed, Harry stamped out through the wall and headed for the library.
When he rose from the dungeon, Harry saw that the castle was darker than it usually was in daytime. Snow had piled up in the windows, shutting out the light. Harry hugged himself inside his warm cloak as he travelled the halls, past classrooms where lessons were taking place. He could hear Professor McGonagall shouting at someone who had turned his partner into a badger. Resisting the urge to peek in, Harry walked on by.
In the library, Harry wandered through the stacks, browsing for anything that might be interesting. At the back, he heard whispering. It was a group of second year Hufflepuffs, doing more gossiping than studying: they had their heads close together and were having a hushed, anxious conversation. He could almost hear them, and he edged closer out of curiosity.
"So anyway," the stout Macmillan was saying, "I told Justin not to leave the dorm unless he had to. There's no telling when Potter will try to finish the job. Hopefully he can keep his head down until Potter finds a new victim."
"You definitely think it is Potter, then, Ernie?" asked Abbott. Her voice was anxious as she toyed with her blonde pigtails.
"Can there be any doubt, Hannah? What House is he in? Slytherin. He speaks Parseltongue, and everyone knows that's the mark of a Dark wizard. Have you ever heard of a decent one who could talk to snakes? They called Slytherin himself Serpent-tongue."
The others murmured heavily, then Granger joined the conversation. "Nobody knows who attacked Missus Norris, but we all saw that Creevey was bothering Potter at the Quidditch match. Potter was laying in the mud, and Creevey was taking snaps like he was on holiday. Next thing we know, Creevey is in the hospital wing. That's a heck of a coincidence."
"He doesn't seem all that mean, though," Abbott said uncertainly.
Granger snorted rudely. "Potter is about as nice as dental work without the gas. His friends are perfectly venomous little vipers as well, especially Malfoy and that ugly Bulstrode."
"But he made You-Know-Who disappear," the pigtailed girl argued. "He can't be all bad, can he?"
Macmillan lowered his voice conspiratorially. "No one knows how he survived that attack. There's no defence against the Killing Curse. Potter should have been annihilated, but he lived. Only a really powerful Dark wizard would have had a chance. That's probably why You-Know-Who wanted to kill him in the first place: didn't want another Dark Lord to grow up and challenge him. I wonder what other special powers Potter's been hiding."
Harry turned away, sick to his stomach that these people were talking about him in such a vile way. To confront them would probably only make things worse and further entrench their thinking. He was angered by their slander, but he departed the stacks and left the library as quietly as he could.
As soon as he shut the library door, though, Harry stalked up the corridor in a blind rage. Fuming, he turned the corner sharply and crashed full-tilt into something very large and solid. Harry bounced back and fell to the floor. Ready to spit nails, he looked up into the great hairy face of the Hogwarts gamekeeper.
The keeper of keys and grounds was wearing his customary moleskin overcoat. His shoulders and hair were liberally snow-covered. In one huge gloved hand, he carried a dead rooster.
"Hagrid," Harry said in a cool voice.
"'Arry," the big man returned. "Why aren't yeh in class?"
"Cancelled," the boy answered as he regained his feet. "What brings you inside the castle?"
"Need teh talk ter the Headmaster," Hagrid rumbled. "Summat's bin killin' 'em off. Second one this term. Might be a Blood-Suckin' Bugbear."
"Well, don't let me keep you. The Headmaster's time is valuable."
Mollified by being smug to Hagrid, Harry dawdled down the stairs and turned along another corridor. The torches here had been blown out by the icy draft that was blowing through a cracked window pane. He was halfway down the passage when he tripped headlong over something lying on the floor and took another spill.
"Miserable, sodding- oh no!"
As he squinted in the gloom, he could just make out the form of Justin Finch-Fletchley. He was cold and rigid, with a look of shock frozen on his face. His empty eyes stared up at the ceiling.
Shocking as it was, it was not as horridly strange as what had happened to the other victim: Gryffindor's House ghost, Nearly Headless Nick, was floating horizontally six inches off the floor. He was no longer pearly white like other ghosts; he was black like soot, smoky instead of translucent.
The details of the scene saturated his brain. Even as Harry jumped to his feet, he mentally noted the muffled sounds of professors lecturing behind closed doors. There on the floor he could see spiders marching single-file like ants, scuttling away from the scene as fast as they could -- which wasn't a bad idea.
By Merlin, he couldn't be found here! After what had happened during the Duelling Club, he would be done for. Harry took off down the passage at a dead run.
He would later reflect that it was not unlike the night he had encountered the giant three-headed dog named Fluffy. Almost recklessly, he ran pell-mell down stairs and into the solid stone safety of the dungeons. Once in Slytherin territory, he fell back against the wall, panting with relief.
"Potter?" Professor Snape stood in the door to the Potions classroom with one eyebrow cocked high. "What are you running from?"
"Attack!" he gasped. "Muggleborn! Gryffindor's ghost!"
"A ghost?" Snape pressed. "How do you mean?"
"Can't explain it, sir," he wheezed.
"Return to your room at once," his Head commanded. "I shall speak with you tonight."
* * *
All further classes were cancelled that afternoon as professors and prefects scoured the castle for the culprit. Harry took the opportunity to take a nap. After his brush with trouble, he was mentally exhausted. He woke only when the dinner hour came, and then he settled down to do his homework.
About half an hour before bed, Professor Snape finally came knocking at the second years' door. Harry, drudging through his Transfiguration, was glad for the excuse to rise from his desk and answer. The teacher looked very haggard indeed.
"Mister Potter, I must have that word with you now."
"Come with me."
Snape led him down the corridor and pushed open the door to the bathroom. A startled Charles Warrington (the Third) took one look at the man's face and bolted from the sink, not even taking his toothbrush. When it was just the two of them, Snape leaned against the sink and looked expectantly at Harry.
"I'd been in the common room since Herbology was cancelled," Harry began. "Then I went to the library. I wandered around for awhile and found some Hufflepuffs gossiping about Duelling Club in the back. I didn't care to hear any more, so I left. I wasn't really going anywhere particular, and then I tripped over Finch-Fletchley's body. I got real scared and started running."
"You saw nothing?" Snape asked intently.
"No, sir. I just found them that way."
"I see," he said thoughtfully. "There are many strange things happening this year, Mister Potter. I am not yet sure how much of it involves you."
Harry started to protest that he wasn't involved with anything, but Snape hushed him. "After what happened at the Duelling Club, you have become a target of suspicion. I do not believe you to be responsible, but others are not so open-minded."
"That's what those children in the library were talking about," Harry admitted.
"Naturally. You have a rare gift, Mister Potter, and not one with a sterling reputation. If you had been caught at the scene of this attack, doubtless you would be standing before the Headmaster. I must ask you to exercise extreme discretion and caution at all times."
"Yes, sir," Harry promised.
"You and your friends managed to unravel quite a mystery last year. I must insist that you stay out of this one. With the Chamber of Secrets open, there is a very real chance that someone could be killed. The Heir might take violent action, even against a Slytherin, in order to continue his work."
Harry gulped. That notion had not occurred to him. "I will, sir."
"Good." Snape stood straight again. "Return to your studies then."
"Actually, sir, I've been having difficulty with this bit of Transfiguration. Can you help me?"
Professor Snape raised an eyebrow. "You ask me instead of your teacher?"
"She doesn't seem to like it when I ask her questions."
* * *
Upon later reflection, Harry would realize it was inevitable that he would get caught. Time and routine had made him careless; closing his wardrobe a little bit too loudly was all it took. Harry froze in the act of dressing on Thursday morning as a polite cough came from Draco's bed.
"Where are you going?" his best mate said through a yawn. "It's barely early."
"Up to breakfast. Most important meal, you know."
"Right," Draco agreed as he thrust his feet into his slippers. He ran his fingers through his hair and pulled his cloak around his dressing gown.
Harry was considerably startled. Draco had never shown any inclination towards rising early when they had their free morning; why should he start now?
"Er," he said, trying to think of a way to stall. "I'm hungry. Why don't you comb your hair and meet me in the Great Hall?"
In response, Draco brandished his comb. "I'm famished," he declared. "Let's go."
Harry had little choice but to follow as Draco strode with determination towards the common room. His secret was about to be revealed!
"Jenna, what in blazes are you doing up?" Draco demanded to know.
"What are you doing up? You look like an unmade bed!" she said pointedly.
"Have you and Harry been sneaking off all term?" Draco pressed her. "Harry, have you been snogging Jenna in the mornings?"
Jenna was a great friend; he had enjoyed getting to know her this year. Harry couldn't fathom kissing his morning coffee mate. The two acomplices made nearly identical faces at Draco. Harry's wore glasses, and Jenna's cheeks were rosy, but they could have been thinking with one brain.
"Together! So cute!" Draco exclaimed.
"For your information, Draco, contrary to your speculation, Harry and I have breakfast every Thursday morning. We've been doing it all term. Nobody else bothers to get up, so they're not invited. Since you're up, would you care to join us?"
"What are you two thinking? You two could collectively be the Heir of Slytherin if the Heir spoke Parseltongue with extreme sarcasm and wit. The other Houses travel in packs, and so must we else we become suspect."
Harry groaned. "I will not have my life dictated by fear of what people might think."
"Bloody right!" Jenna shook her fist. "We've done this every Thursday since term started, and we're not changing."
"I wasn't fooling about being starved, so I'll go with you two half-wits, but I strongly advise travelling in larger groups."
"Fine, we'll wake you for breakfast from now on," Jenna snickered. "Since you seem to care so much about our reputation and all, you can be a part of the group. Surely you should relish the opportunity to add the lustre of the Malfoy name to our image."
Draco blinked at her. "Jenna, you've got a big mouth."
"Why do I put up with you?"
"Because she's funny," Harry answered for her.
"He's right," she told Draco.
"She's so nice," he told Draco.
"Would you two stop admiring each other? I'm starting to not want to eat."
"So Harry and I will just go up by ourselves," Jenna informed him, "like we do every Thursday."
"No, I'm awake, thank you very much. I might as well eat, since talking with you made my head hurt. No chance of sleep now."
"I know using your brain hurts, but you should really stop complaining about it; people might get the wrong idea."
"Do you ever shut up?" Draco asked in exasperation.
Draco threw up his hands and stomped towards the exit out to the dungeons. Harry grinned at Jenna, and they locked arms and hurried after.
At the Slytherin table, there was little talking as students gobbled down eggs and bacon and sausages and toast and pancakes and pastries and milk and juice and coffee and-
"Jenna, are you drinking coffee?" Draco suddenly sat up and took notice.
"Of course," she answered calmly, sipping from the thick mug with lady-like daintiness.
"You're not supposed to be drinking coffee!"
"No, you lot decided that I wasn't supposed to be drinking coffee. You lot are all quacks. Harry and I have done this once a week since September, and you haven't noticed a whit."
"Then explain why you were so barmy on the train!"
"Dad makes good coffee," she shrugged.
* * *
The new attack threw the whole castle into an uproar. One more Muggleborn had become a casualty, but Nearly Headless Nick's condition really spooked people. Nobody could explain what had happened to him, and even the ghosts were now scared.
The teachers had finally come forward to admit that there was a serious problem. The castle would be closed for the holiday, the students were told, and searched exhaustively for the Chamber of Secrets and the Monster of Slytherin.
Things had clearly gotten out of hand. The only good news was that Harry finally had the excuse he needed to force the Muggles to give him permission to leave school. When presented with the possibility of having him in their house over the holiday, they quickly capitulated.
Something that helped distract the school was the choir's Christmas performance. On the last night of the term, Sunday, nearly every student packed into the Great Hall. In addition, the school governors were in attendance, and many parents had come up to hear their children sing.
Harry felt an odd fluttering in his stomach as the choir was announced. He thought everything would be fine, that he'd mastered the nervous anticipation he felt just before singing, but apparently such was not the case. Blaise stood right beside him, and unless he missed his guess, she was just as nervous as he was. The bouncing and shifting on her toes gave her away. Luckily, he was standing still, so he didn't think his nervousness was showing.
Professor Dumbledore called the students to attention and announced the choir at last, and then they trooped out in straight lines. They filed their way onto the dais and waited for the Sorting Hat to announce the song and give them their entry.
"Noble witches and gentlewizards," the Sorting Hat began, "every song you will hear tonight was suggested by and voted for by the members of this choir. We hope you enjoy our singing, and we invite you to join in on the time-honoured favourites. Now, we give you, 'The Wassail Song!'"
The first piece was without any music at all. The bass part began very softly, and then the sopranos echoed them at a higher octave. The harmony took shape as the song's voices blended together, as the students stared with wide eyes and open mouths. Clearly, the talent of this choir hadn't been anticipated. The song built to a lively climax before dying out. Then it returned in a second crescendo before fading altogether.
After about ten seconds of silence, the audience seemed to realize that the song was finished, and they broke into thunderous applause. The Sorting Hat bobbed at its pupils and signalled for the second song.
Harry was dreading this one. "Good King Wenceslas" was his solo piece. He was singing the part of the Page. His voice hadn't yet begun changing, and since his was the highest treble male voice in the choir, he had been stuck with it. To his utter relief, however, Draco was singing the part of the king. They had practised the piece to where Draco mumbled the words in his sleep.
Besides, he thought wryly as the music began, since we're doing it now, it'll be over faster, and then I can listen to Pansy without worrying about anything.
"Hither, page, and stand by me
If thou know'st it, telling
Yonder peasant who is he?
Where and what his dwelling?"
Draco sang. Harry smiled to himself. This was going to be easy. He answered with growing confidence and a deep glowing happiness that welled up from within his heart.
"Sire he lives a good league hence
Underneath the mountain.
Right against the forest fence,
By Saint Agnes' Fountain."
As the choir continued to sing, the night grew darker and the candles began to brighten. After the fourth song, the audience lost its awe of the group, but it was replaced by a very intimate setting where they could sing and laugh freely. In spite of the large crowd, the place soon felt like a small house filled with family members singing round a large tree and a crackling fire.
By the time the final piece, "Let There Be Peace On Earth", was announced, the audience felt no compunction to stay silent. Before they were invited to sing, however, Pansy raised her lovely soprano voice in the traditional entreaty. "Let there be peace on earth, and let it begin with me," she sang. Most of the women were in tears by the time the hat signalled that they could sing, so they started out slowly, but by the time the song had gone into the final lines, everyone was standing and singing at the tops of their lungs.
With the last song over, the members of the choir mingled into the audience. Mr. Malfoy stepped onto the stage at this point. Like the other governors, his fine black robes were decorated with the school crest.
"Students of Hogwarts!" he said grandly, raising his arms wide. "Faculty, parents, and friends! I have seldom heard such wonderful singing as we have heard tonight." He paused as the crowd applauded once more for the choir. "At this time, the governors would crave your indulgence for a bit of ceremony. Two months ago, a gang of hooligans attempted to do grievous bodily harm to my son Draco. A heroic prefect intervened, and justice was done. Tonight, the governors wish to honour the actions of that prefect. Perseus Ignatius Weasley, please join us on stage."
Slytherin House burst into applause. The staff and visiting parents joined in politely. Grudgingly, the other Houses clapped as well. There was a block of Gryffindors that remained stony-faced and silent. Percy took the stage with a flaming red face.
"Percy, your actions show you to be of the highest moral calibre. You are an example to your fellow prefects and to all students. The school governors are proud at this time to present you with the Cliodne Medal of Wizardly Merit."
Mr. Malfoy held up the golden disk on a bright blue ribbon. Percy bowed his head, and the governor draped the award around the prefect's neck. "Stand and be recognized."
Percy turned to face the crowd. His flush was gone, and a look of vindication twisted his lips into a smile. The medal glittering brightly on his chest was matched by a gleam in his eyes.
The Slytherins clapped long and hard. As Percy quit the stage, his new friends closed around him. Draco slipped away to offer his personal congratulations. Mr. Malfoy was smiling broadly, shaking hands with parents. He gradually made his way through the throng to where Harry and his friends stood.
"Ah, Harry, how delightful to see you again. Staying out of trouble, I trust. Timothy, Millicent, Ms. Zabini."
"Mister Malfoy," the young Slytherins responded.
"Harry, might I have a private word with you?"
As Harry and Mr. Malfoy stepped off to the side. Harry caught Ron Weasley staring daggers at him. The prat looked fit to be tied.
"I trust you know that the school will be closed for the holiday. Yet I have received no request to join us at Malfoy Manor. The invitation was, of course, implicit." Mr. Malfoy sounded vaguely sad.
"Thank you, sir. I did consider it, but with Elan coming home for Christmas, I thought the family deserved some time together."
Mr. Malfoy nodded. "That's very kind of you, Harry. Where, then, will you go?"
"Everyone invited me," Harry said, unable to hide his sheer joy at that simple fact. He loved having friends. "I'll be going home with Tim."
"Ah, the Notts; fine old family. Good. I'm glad to know you won't be wandering the streets of London."
Harry grinned. "No fear of that," he assured. "I'd rent a room at the Leaky Cauldron if I had to."
"Let us be thankful that you do not."
* * *
Harry felt his excitement build as all the students gathered up their belongings and journeyed down to Hogsmeade station that Monday morning. Getting away from Hogwarts, from all the whispers and rumours and paranoia, was absolutely wonderful.
The mood on the Hogwarts Express was light. The holiday performance had helped brighten everyone's aura. The hours of the long train ride slipped by quickly, and before they even realized it, the train was pulling into King's Cross station.
Somehow, in a hurried frenzy, all students made it out of their compartments and onto the platform. Waiting parents helped unload trunks and pets and children. Harry stuck close to Tim; he wouldn't know Mr. Nott if he saw him.
"Elan!" Draco broke into a run and dropped his bag as he wrapped his arms around his big brother. The former Hogwarts prefect looked well. He still stood tall, his bearing as regal as a prince.
"Draco, you look surprisingly fit for a near homicide victim."
"Madam Pomfrey is a miracle worker," Draco replied. "But if it hadn't been for Percy, even she couldn't have helped me."
"Ah yes. I must see him before we depart today."
"Well, he's over there," Harry pointed out.
"Harry, a pleasure to see you again. All is well, I trust?"
"Well, excuse me then."
Elan walked purposefully towards his old group of friends. Jamie Zabini's face lit up with a brilliant smile, and the kiss she bestowed upon him was rather embarrassing to watch. When Elan started shaking hands with the blokes, Percy stepped back from the group and seemed about to slink away. Elan turned away from Sam Palce and said something to him. Harry couldn't hear it, but Percy's face registered astonishment. Elan opened his arms and stepped forward to hug the red-haired boy tightly.
"I never thought I'd see the day," Draco commented. "Elan's never had so much as a kind word for Percy."
"I think Percy's gone into shock," Tim observed.
"Dad!" Tim hugged a shortish old man with grey hair. His dark blue robes decorated with mystic-looking symbols, like a magician out of some Muggle fairytale. There could be no doubt that this was Mr. Nott; Harry could see it in the structure of his face.
"Is this young Potter, then?" the man asked, offering Harry his hand.
"Harry, if you please, sir."
"Harry it shall be, then. Have you all your things?"
The Boy Who Lived turned to his best mate. "Enjoy the holiday," he said sincerely.
"I'll see you at the Christmas party. It's at Pansy's house this year."
"Fair enough," Harry agreed. "Cheers!"
Back through the barrier they went, and down the street to Puddlemucker's Sweet Shoppe. Despite Mr. Nott's highly unusual attire, none of the Muggles gave them so much as a second glance. In the shoppe, Mr. Nott flipped the fire attendant two Galleons. The tin of Floo powder was produced, and the wizard tossed it into the fire with panache.
"Casa de Nott," he ordered.
The green flames crackled delightfully, and the man vanished into them. Tim followed, and then Harry. As he began to spin, Harry held onto his stomach and prayed not to be sick.
to be continued...
Author notes: Yes, there is an AU version of Year One. Please read my previous work, They Shook Hands before you read this one, otherwise things will get confusing.
You can join my Yahoo group Deth By Fanfiction to participate in an open forum for discussing all things about this fic. Chapter updates go out here first before I post to Schnoogle.
Many thanks to my loffly beta reader, Christi. This fic would not be possible without her help. I loff you so much, Christi!