Harry Potter and the Daemon Sidhe


Story Summary:
In the aftermath of the events of the Ministry, Harry is in dire need of help. That help arrives in the form of six mysterious people, along with his friends and even foes, who give him the strength and support he will need to defeat Voldemort. Written post-OotP but will take some factors of HBP into account.

Chapter 04 - 4

Chapter Summary:
Harry receives a pleasant surprise and has a few long conversations that shed some light on several issues.
Author's Note:
Just to let everyone know, you can find all currently written chapters of this fic (about 20) at my Yahoo group - http://au.groups.com/group/KatlingGON/

Chapter 4

When Harry returned to the house that evening after another calming day in the park, he was very surprised, and secretly amused, to find Albus Dumbledore sitting in the parlour, calmly sipping from a cup of tea. Harry stared at his Headmaster in surprise, wondering how Aunt Petunia had reacted to his arrival. The Headmaster was wearing a set of bright blue robes with swirling gold and silver stars all over them. Harry swallowed a smile as he imagined his Aunt's reaction when she opened the door to that!

"Ah, Harry," the headmaster said benevolently. "It's good to see that you've been getting some fresh air this summer."

Harry twitched a little and eyed the Headmaster warily, unsure of what that statement was meant to mean. "Er, hello, Professor," he said hesitantly. "Is something wrong?"

"No, no, dear boy," Dumbledore replied with a twinkle in his eyes. "Do come and sit down. I have some things to tell you."

Harry nodded and walked over to the couch. He flopped down onto it and stared at his hands.

"Tea?" the Headmaster offered and he looked up.

"Er, no, thank you."

"Sherbet lemon?"

"No, thanks"

"Ah well," Dumbledore said, popping one of the sherbets in his mouth. "Now, as to why I am here. I have had quite an interesting day." His eyes twinkled and a small smile settled on his face. "It seems you sent out more that just two letters."

Harry flushed and wondered what he'd done wrong now.

"Now, Harry, nothing is wrong," Dumbledore said with a chuckle. "It is merely the fact that I have had floo conversations today with, let me see..." The Headmaster tilted his head back and began to count on his fingers. "Mrs Molly Weasley, Mr Ronald Weasley, Miss Ginny Weasley, Mr Arthur Weasley, Miss Hermione Granger, Mr Neville Longbottom, Miss Luna Lovegood and Mr Remus Lupin."

Harry's jaw dropped at the list of names and the Headmaster chuckled at his expression.

"And do you know what each and every one of these people wanted to know?" Dumbledore asked with a merry expression.

Harry shook his head numbly; he wasn't entirely sure he wanted to know.

"They wanted to know what on earth I was doing leaving you here and how soon could you leave." Dumbledore's expression became thoughtful. "In fact I believe Remus Lupin's exact words were: 'He's coming to Grimmauld Place and staying with me tonight if I have to knock down every bloody ward and get him myself.'"

Harry's jaw dropped open again and an odd, warm feeling flooded through him at Remus' words.

"So," the Headmaster was saying, "rather than let such precipitous action occur, I rather thought it would behoove me to head the lot of them off at the pass, as it were. Would you like to leave here and stay with Remus for the rest of the summer?"

Harry was rendered speechless for a moment then he managed to get his brain working again. "I...Yes! Please! When can we go?"

Dumbledore chuckled. "As soon as you are packed, dear boy."

Harry stared at the Headmaster for a moment longer then he shot out of the room at a dead run and went upstairs. He threw everything into his trunk as quickly as he could and turned to where Hedwig was sitting on the back of his chair.

"Thank you, Hedwig," he whispered to her as her stroked her head. "You did a great job. I'm going to Grimmauld Place for the rest of the summer. Meet me there?"

The snowy owl hooted and nibbled on his fingers for a moment the spread her wings. Harry stepped back and she flew silently out of the window. Harry grabbed her empty cage, thumped the lid of his trunk shut and dragged it out of his room. He was halfway down the stairs when Dumbledore appeared in the doorway to the living room. He raised an eyebrow and in short order, Harry's trunk and Hedwig's cage were now very small and sitting on one of the steps. Harry blinked then picked up his shrunken trunk and cage and slipped it into his pocket.

"Neat, sir!" he said happily as he came down the last of the stairs and Dumbledore smiled.

The Headmaster walked over and wrapped a very startled Harry in a hug. Then with a loud crack, they were standing in front of the house at 12 Grimmauld Place. Harry looked up at the house and swallowed around the lump in his throat. There would be no Sirius to greet him with a smile and a hug this time, no Sirius walking around whistling or singing, no Sirius to talk to or crack jokes with. These thoughts ran through his mind as he and the Headmaster walked up to the door. They disappeared in an instant though when they walked into the house and he was immediately engulfed in Remus' hug. His arms automatically went round the werewolf and soon he was hugging back as hard as he was being hugged. Neither of them saw Dumbledore disappear into the kitchen.

After an age, Remus pulled back a little and smiled at him with tears in his eyes. "Hi, Harry. I've missed you."

Harry choked back a sob then let it out when he saw that Remus wasn't in much better condition. They leaned against each other and wept for themselves, for Sirius. When they finally quietened, Harry didn't feel inclined to leave the comfort of Remus' arms. He felt loved for one of the few times in his life and he rather thought this must be what its like to be held by a father. Finally, Remus pulled back again, though he left one arm comfortingly around Harry's shoulders in a loose embrace.

"I guess I'm taking up your offer," he said quietly and Harry smiled. "And, Harry, I don't hate you. I could never hate you. What happened was a series of terrible accidents. Nobody meant for them to happen. It was not your fault."

Harry ducked his head and he felt Remus' fingers under his chin, pulling his head up gently. Harry smiled weakly at the older man and Remus looked at him gravely for a moment.

"Come on," he said, changing the subject. "I'm sure the Headmaster will be waiting for us in the kitchen."

Remus was right, of course, and the Headmaster also had three mugs of tea waiting as well. Harry sat down next to Remus and wrapped his hands around the mug, enjoying the warmth.

"Now, Harry," the Headmaster said seriously and Harry's head shot up. "I must ask you to stay within the house. I know that seems awfully restrictive but this is not the best part of London and I do not wish you to come to any harm. We will organise for you to go to Diagon Alley a few times and I'm sure the Weasleys will have no problems relocating here in the next few days." Harry smiled and agreed to the restrictions then Dumbledore eyed him kindly. "I also must insist that you continue with your Occlumency lessons. I know you will be unhappy about this but I must ask that you continue them with Professor Snape until you are sufficiently trained for me to take over."

Harry scowled at this news and then blinked as he remembered he could talk this over with Kolos tonight. He kept the scowl on his face as he didn't want to let Dumbledore know about this just yet and nodded as sullenly as he could manage. Dumbledore seemed a little suspicious of his quiet, albeit sulky, agreement but then nodded in slightly confused acceptance.

"Now, I am sure both of you have better things to do than spend your time with an old man like me, so I shall be off." The Headmaster stood and walked over to the fire, grabbing a handful of floo powder. "I shall ask Professor Snape to resume your Occlumency lessons in three days, Harry. And we should be able to manage a visit to Diagon Alley shortly after that." He then threw the powder into the fire and with a muttered, "Headmaster's Office, Hogwarts", stepped into the flames and disappeared.

Remus looked over at Harry, not in the slightest bit taken in by the boy's attitude. "I would have thought you'd protest a bit more," he said blandly.

Harry shrugged then eyed Remus speculatively. "Can I talk to you? In private?"

"Of course!" Remus said as he stood. He offered a hand to Harry and dragged him up. "Let's go into the library."

They walked quietly down the hall where Harry could see the curtains that covered the portrait of Mrs Black and they walked upstairs to the library. Remus directed him over to two comfortable looking chairs in the furthest corner of the room and they settled down into them. Harry stared at his hands for a moment then looked up at Remus.

"I want you to be my guardian," he blurted out.

Remus stared at him in shock; that was probably the last thing he had expected Harry to say. He tried desperately to get his mouth working properly. "I...Really?" He broke out into a smile. "I...I'd love to!" His face fell. "Harry...the Ministry..."

"The Ministry can kiss my arse," Harry growled. "They've spent various parts of the last five years making my life hell, particularly last year. Well, they owe me and this is my price!"

Remus stared at Harry in utter shock for a moment then collapsed laughing. Harry stared at the werewolf in exasperation.

"Remus? What so funny?" He scowled and crossed his arms. "Remus?"

The werewolf pulled himself together and grinned at the irritated young man in front of him. "You were just a very weird combination of James and Lily when you said that," he said fondly. "The language was very Prongs but the expression on your face was all Lily."

Harry stared at Remus for a moment then started laughing sheepishly. "Yeah, well, I meant it. I want you to be my guardian. I'll bet Dumbledore could wangle it somehow."

"I sure he could," Remus said with a grin. "I'll speak to him tomorrow and I'll...impress upon him how much you want this."

Harry grinned back. "You mean like how you impressed upon him how much you wanted me to come here." He tipped his head back slightly and mock-thought. "Let me see. What did he say your words were? Oh yes, he's coming to Grimmauld Place and staying with me tonight if I have to knock down every bloody ward and get him myself."

Remus blinked to hear his heated words repeated back to him and he laughed sheepishly as he ran a hand through his greying hair. "Yes, well, I had just read your letter and I was a bit worried about you."

Harry smiled. "You don't have to explain to me, Remus. I...I was glad to hear them. Made me realise that there are people out there that care about me." He gave a sad half-smile and shrugged one shoulder.

"Of course there are!" Remus replied indignantly then he sighed and shook his head. "Of course there are," he repeated softly.

Harry flushed a little and picked at the arm of the chair. He bit his lip and looked back up at Remus.

"Remus?" he asked hesitantly. "If I tell you about something, will you swear not to tell Professor Dumbledore...or anyone else for that matter?"

Remus looked at the earnest young man sitting opposite him and made a snap decision. "Of course. I won't betray your trust, Harry. Not ever."

Harry's smile was blinding and he leaned forward, looking excited and eager. "Remus, you'll never believe what's been happening to me lately!" He looked around the room, lowered his voice a bit more and proceeded to tell his guardian-to-be about everything that had happened to him with the Daemon Sidhe. At first, Remus was a bit alarmed but then a vague something he half-remembered from History of Magic came back to him and when Harry mentioned the book Snape had loaned him, he fully remembered what it was. When Harry finished, Remus stared at him blankly for a moment as he ran through the passage about the Daemon Sidhe mentally again.

"You are their King?" he asked softly.

Harry grimaced. "That's what they keep telling me." He rolled his eyes. "I'm not sure I want to be their King but they seem so sure."

"Well, Voldemort would certainly count as a great darkness threatening the land and war is imminent," Remus continued absently.

"Yeah," Harry said dryly then his expression became worried. "You won't tell anyone, will you?"

Remus frowned indignantly. "Of course not! I promised, didn't I?"

Harry smiled again and relaxed back into his chair. His face darkened as he remembered the events of last night.

"Snape made it worse, you know," he said abruptly.

"Made what worse?"

"The whole thing with Voldemort," Harry growled. "I had my first real Occlumency lesson with Kolos last night." He shook his head. "You should have heard what he said about the way Snape tried to teach me. Remus, I learnt more in one night with Kolos than I learnt in all those lessons with Snape. That bastard didn't mention anything about grounding and centring or about shielding and, according to Kolos, that's the first thing he should have taught me."

"But you know that now, don't you?" Remus asked slightly alarmed and trying not to dwell too much on Snape's teaching deficiencies. It wasn't too long till the full moon and the wolf was getting restless. He really didn't think snarling at the man who made his Wolfsbane Potion was a good idea.

"Yeah, my shields are up," Harry said firmly. "They aren't very strong at the moment but Kolos says that will come with time until they're just second nature."

"Good," Remus said with relief that quickly turned to interest. "I wouldn't mind meeting this Kolos. He was reputed to be a great scholar."

Harry grinned. "He liked the idea of Hogwarts when I told him about it. He thought it was a brilliant idea." He cocked his head to one side. "Maybe they'll be able to drag you into Dreamtime as well tonight. I'll ask."

Remus smiled. "I'd like that." He looked over at the grandfather clock on the wall and stood with a muttered oath. "You must be starving, Harry. Come on, dinner awaits."

He pulled Harry to his feet and gestured floridly towards the kitchen, causing Harry to laugh merrily.


That night Harry lay a little uncomfortably on the bed in Sirius' old room. Remus had insisted he take the room, muttering something about it being his anyway. He had refused to elaborate on that comment, saying it would have to wait until after his birthday. Harry had shaken his head but given in. His problem with the bed wasn't that it was uncomfortable; in fact it was very comfortable. It was big too, bigger than his bed at Hogwarts even. The problem lay in the room itself. Although Remus had cleared out all of Sirius' things, it was still very much Sirius' room. Harry rolled over onto his side; there was still an indefinable scent in the air that was Sirius and he kept half-expecting his godfather to come waltzing into the room and start teasing him about sleeping in the wrong bed.

Harry rolled over onto his back and stared up at the ceiling. This was just typical; he actually wanted to sleep tonight and here he was lying wide awake. He sighed and laced his hands together on his chest. In spite of his mild discomfort about the room, he was glad to be here. To be away from the Dursleys and with someone who actually cared whether he lived or died was just about perfect as far as he was concerned. He turned his thoughts to the conversation he had had with Remus about the Daemon Sidhe. He wasn't surprised that the older man had known about them; Remus was an inveterate bookworm. He'd probably read the same book Harry had. He was a bit surprised that Remus had been so quick to promise not to tell Professor Dumbledore. He was in the middle of musing about this when he fell asleep.

He opened his eyes to find himself in the workroom with Devante and Gwydion perched on their stools. He grinned at them and walked over to his own stool and sat down.

"Well, you're in a good mood tonight," Gwydion said with surprise. "You're positively radiating happiness."

Harry blinked. "I am?"

"Mmm," Devante chuckled. "So what's going on?"

"I've moved," Harry said with a smile. "I've left the Dursleys and I'm staying with Remus at Grimmauld Place." His good mood dimmed a little at the last.

Devante and Gwydion noticed that slight change in mood but after a quick mental conversation, decided to ignore it.

"Well, that's good news," Gwydion said cheerfully.

Harry relaxed and smiled. "Yeah, very good. Um, can I ask a question?"

Devante snorted. "Of course! You realise that technically we serve you. You don't really have to ask our permission for everything."

Harry gaped a little. "Er, really? Um, well, I don't really want to do that. It's...well, it's a bit rude."

The two men chuckled and waved at Harry to continue.

Harry shook his head. "Well, I was talking to Remus about the Daemon Sidhe." He hesitated. "I wanted to tell someone and I knew I could trust Remus. Anyway, he wanted to meet you." Harry laughed. "He wanted to meet Kolos actually but I'm sure he'd like to meet all of you."

Devante and Gwydion exchanged significant looks.

"So you've found the first member of your court then?" Gwydion asked softly.

"What?" Harry gasped.

"A King must have a court, Harry," Devante said gently.

"What kind of court?" Harry asked weakly.

Gwydion chuckled. "I suppose we make it sound a bit more than what it actually is when we use that word. What you have to understand is that when the parameters for our appearance were set up, this land was ruled by a king so we just mimicked that. Merlin had a court." The wizard thought for a moment. "It consisted, if I remember correctly, of a handful of warriors and a seer, I think. But each court is different. It's basically a way of surrounding yourself with those who will be able to aid and advise you in the upcoming brouhaha."

Harry blinked at that then frowned. "You know, for people who are supposed to have been asleep for a long time, your language isn't what I would have expected."

Gwydion chuckled. "You're right; we kind of immersed ourselves into your culture for a bit as we were looking for you. It wouldn't do to being speaking in a manner that you didn't understand." He paused and fixed Harry with a steady gaze. "And you're trying to change the subject. You will have a court, Harry. But don't worry; it will probably consist of people you already know. Like this Remus of yours. The fact that you felt that you trusted him enough to tell him about us is a fair sign that he will be part of your court."

"Oh," Harry said weakly then he pulled himself together a bit. "Um, so is there a way to pull him into Deamtime?"

Gwydion stared at him for a long moment. "Yes," he said slowly, "but you'll have to do it. We don't know him well enough to try it. How to do that should have been part of what you unlocked within your mind."

Harry nodded and frowned in thought. Gwydion was right; he did know how to pull someone else into Dreamtime. He closed his eyes and very nervously pushed his mind out in search of Remus. It took him a while to find the werewolf and when he did he quickly recognised that Remus was in the middle of a nightmare. He gasped when he saw the subject of the nightmare; it was himself running after Sirius and straight through the Veil while Remus stood frozen and unable to move. He shuddered and gathered Remus' mind and pulled him into Dreamtime. He quickly opened his eyes and saw a very pale and shaking Remus standing in the workroom. Harry leapt off his stool and ran over to the man.

"Remus?" he asked with a worried look.

The werewolf looked around a little wildly then his wide-eyed gaze fixed on Harry. He gulped and dragged Harry into a tight embrace. "Merlin! Harry!" He took a deep breath and the embrace loosened just a little. Remus dropped his forehead onto Harry's shoulder and shuddered. "It was just a dream," he muttered to himself.

Harry tightened his arms around his soon-to-be-guardian. "Yeah, Remus, it was just a dream," he said quietly. "I'm not going to do that."

Remus reluctantly let Harry go and placed his hands on the boy's shoulders. He smiled weakly. "Yeah, I know." That was when he seemed to realise where he was. "Er, Harry? Where are we?"

Harry grinned. "In Dreamtime. This is where I've been meeting the Daemon Sidhe."

Remus' eyes widened and he looked over at the two men sitting in the middle of the room. "Then are they?" He broke off and swallowed.

Gwydion chuckled and walked over. He held out his hand and Remus rather nervously shook it. "My name's Gwydion. And I believe you are Remus." Gwydion frowned and his eyes narrowed as he looked at the other man. "You're a werewolf!" he said in surprise.

Remus flinched slightly and Harry scowled.

"So?" he said belligerently. "What's that got to do with anything? Remus is a good man. He's not some kind of monster. And he's going to be my guardian until I'm of age." He crossed his arms in front of his chest and glared at Gwydion.

The wizard reacted to Harry's furious defence with surprise and he held his hands up in a gesture of peace. "Easy, Harry. I wasn't going to call him a monster. I was just surprised. Most werewolves are driven insane by their lycanthropy. Or they were when we were last around." He smiled at the young man in front of him. "And if this is the first person you chose to trust with the knowledge of the Daemon Sidhe then I'm sure he is a good man."

Harry calmed down. "Sorry, Gwydion."

"No apologies needed, Harry," Gwydion said with a grin and a dismissive wave of his hand. "I'm glad to see you so protective of those you love. It's a good sign."

"Yes, it is," said Devante as he came up to stand beside Gwydion. He held out his hand to Remus as well. "Welcome, Remus. I'm Devante."

Remus smiled and shook the proffered hand. "Thank you both."

"We're very pleased to meet the first of Harry's court," Devante said blandly.

Remus looked startled and turned to look at Harry. "Court?"

Harry rolled his eyes. "Apparently because I'm a king, I should have a court," he said dryly.

Devante chuckled and explained the matter to Remus. The werewolf stood looking intrigued for a moment then he chuckled as the disgruntled look on Harry's face.

"Harry, have you ever considered that the Order is a type of 'court'?"

Harry blinked and stared at Remus with surprise.

Remus chuckled again. "Think of 'court' as being a circle of friends that you rely on and trust. 'Court' is just a fancy name for it."

Comprehension dawned on Harry's face and looked over at Gwydion. "So the fact that I really want to tell Ron and Hermione about this probably means that they're part of my...court?"

"Probably," Gwydion replied blandly.

"Did you want to tell Dumbledore?" Remus asked curiously.

"No," Harry said sharply then flushed.

"I guess he's not part of the court then," Remus said blandly.

"You know, this could be your new knowledge combining with your old knowledge and your instincts to tell you who the best people are for your court," Gwydion mused. He then frowned in concentration and Kolos suddenly appeared.

"What is it?" the scholar snapped. "I was rather busy."

"You're always 'rather busy'" Devante said mildly. "We've got a question for you and an introduction to make."

Kolos looked around and his eyes lighted on Remus. "So I see. Well, get on with it."

Harry swallowed a smile and stepped forward. "Kolos, this is Remus Lupin. He's to be my guardian until I'm of age. Remus, this is the Scholar, Kolos."

The two men shook hands and Kolos eyed Remus with interest. "Werewolf, hmm?" he said musingly. "Obviously treatment has changed in the years we've been gone. You're sane."

Both Harry and Remus tried not to react and Kolos turned his interested gaze over to Gwydion. "So what's your question?"

"Harry told Remus about us because it felt right. Could that be a result of the combination of his new knowledge, his old knowledge and his instincts?" Gwydion said succinctly.

Kolos tilted his head slightly to one side as he considered the question. "Could be," he said finally. "Merlin said that was how he chose his court. That's why he rejected that idiot woman, Morgan Le Fay. She was a powerful witch but he said he didn't trust her with the knowledge of this."

Remus' eyes widened with that statement and Harry relaxed.

"So I should just continue on the way I've been going then?" he said with relief.

"Yes, I'd say so," Kolos replied. "Now, aren't you supposed to be having lessons with Devante and Gwydion?"

"Er, yes," Harry said.

"Good, you do that," Kolos replied. "I'll take Remus and we can go and have a nice chat until you're ready for me. He has the look of a confirmed bibliophile and I like a man like that."

With that blunt statement, Kolos placed a hand on Remus' shoulder and the two men disappeared. Harry stared at the place where the two men had been in surprise and Devante and Gwydion chuckled.

"You'll have to excuse Kolos," Gwydion said with a smile. "He's always been a bit like that when people he can have a decent in-depth conversation with turn up."

Harry shook his head and smiled wryly. "Well, I'm sure they'll both have fun."

"No doubt," Devante said with a grin. "Now, on to more serious things. Let's go over what you did yesterday and see if you don't have a little more success."

Harry groaned and walked over to his stool to begin the lessons. He met with a little more success this time in that he didn't cause any more large explosions, only a few small ones. About halfway through the lessoning he suddenly realised the problem he was having.

"It's control, isn't it?" he asked as he blinked away the aftermath of another failed attempt at Lumos. "That's the problem. The amount of control I used previously is no longer appropriate." He frowned and then whispered, "Lumos."

A steady light glowed from the end of his wand and he grinned in triumph. The two men smiled back and Harry ended the spell. He then raised an eyebrow and put his wand down. He held out his hand and in a normal voice said, "Lumos."

He gasped as light seemed to stream from his hand, this time the normal speaking tone had produced what Harry had expected from the spell. The two members of the Daemon Sidhe watched with interest as Harry ended the spell and picked up his wand and examined it. He looked at the two men.

"The wand focuses our magic, doesn't it?" he asked with dawning understanding. "The magic is within ourselves. The wand just makes to easier to use."

"Very good, Harry," Gwydion said with delight. "Exactly right. That's why with this new power you have access to you will have to really concentrate hard to control the use of your wand. You had it right before; lower the volume of the controlling word or words and minimise the wand action, if any." He gave a flourish of his hand and a table appeared with a large feather sitting on it. "Try using the Levitation spell on the feather."

Harry frowned and, with the barest movement of his wand, he whispered, "Wingardium leviosa." The feather jerked and then rose shakily into the air. Harry concentrated on keeping it up in the air then slowly let the feather down to rest on the table again. He took in a deep breath then put his wand down and tried again without it. His first attempt with just the words was a failure but when he combined the words with a movement of his hand that approximated the wand movement, he was able to get the feather to float through the air. He then let it back down onto the table and looked up at Devante and Gwydion with a grin.

"I think I'm getting the hang of this," he said.

"Well, for the small spells you are," Gwydion said dryly. "Wait until we get onto the big ones that already take a lot of power and are hard to control."

"Gee, thanks for that boost to my confidence," Harry said wryly.

"No problem," Gwydion said with a chuckle then he sobered. "Harry, feel free to tell me this is none of my business or that you're not ready to talk about it but what's wrong?"

"Uh, what do you mean?" Harry asked warily.

Gwydion sighed. "Look, it's been pretty obvious to all of us that something's wrong. Your nightmares were a pretty strong indicator and you've been very eager to come straight into Dreamtime and not spend any time actually asleep. Then when you bring Remus in tonight, it's clear you've pulled him out of a pretty nasty nightmare that obviously involved you."

"How do you come to that conclusion?" Harry asked, stalling for time.

"Because the first thing he does is grab you and then he reassures himself that it was just a dream," Gwydion said bluntly then he sighed. "Look, as I said, feel free to tell me to put a sock in it but Harry, we're here to help you. With anything."

Harry looked at Gwydion and Devante and saw that there was no pressure in either of the men's faces, just concern, worry and kindness. Some part of him buckled at those genuine looks and he sagged on his stool.

"I...can we not do this here?" he said softly.

Devante nodded and concentrated for a moment. The workroom swirled around them and the three quickly found them selves seated in comfortable chairs in front of the fireplace in the small study off the salle that Harry had originally been in.

"This better?' Devante asked and Harry nodded. He stared into the fire as he began to organise his thoughts. He was a little surprised at his willingness to trust these men whom he had only met a few days ago but then he also knew that he could trust them After all they had come for him and him alone. He looked back up at the two men and slowly began to tell them about his life. He decided to tell them everything because it would be hard to understand the full impact of recent events without understanding where Harry had come from. The only sound in the room for the next hour or so was Harry's low voice describing life both at the Dursleys and at Hogwarts, culminating in the hesitant and choked description of the events in the Ministry and the Headmaster's office. After he finished, the three sat in silence with only the crackling of the fire being heard.

"I am sorry, Harry. It is a terrible thing to lose those you love," said Devante softly. Harry looked up at him and saw from the expression on the older man's face that he knew what he was talking about. He wondered who these people were and how someone like Devante would know what it was like to lose family.

Gwydion's face was contemplative when he spoke. "Yes, it is and it is a credit to you, Harry, that you have not allowed what has happened to you to dull your faith in humanity."

"In general or in particular?" Harry asked sourly and the side of Gwydion's lips quirked.

"Ah, you're talking about the actions of your Headmaster?" he said wryly.

"Yeah," Harry said wearily. "I mean, looking back on his actions and everything he's said to me, I know he loves me deeply. But I can't help but wonder why, if he does love me, he left me with the Dursleys. And then why he kept sending me back there. He knew I wasn't happy there." Harry shook his head a little angrily. "And then everything he's done since I've been at Hogwarts. Look at first year. He knew that we knew about the Philosopher's Stone. He knew it was in danger and yet he did nothing. Except let Ron, Hermione and I risk our lives going after Quirrell." He scowled. "You know, I think Snape is right. There is one set of rules for me and one set for everyone else. It's just that he's wrong about why they're there. He thinks it's because I'm the 'famous Harry Potter' and everything should be presented to me on a silver platter. I think it's because Dumbledore's been training me surreptitiously because of the bloody prophecy."

Harry slumped back into his chair and stared angrily at the fire. Devante and Gwydion exchanged glances then the warrior-wizard turned his attention inwards for a moment. In response to Devante's call, Kolos and Remus appeared in the study. Gwydion quickly conjured two more chairs and the two men sat down and looked curiously around.

"What's going on?" Remus asked quietly with a concerned look at the sulking Harry.

"Harry's just told us about...well, his life," Devante replied calmly and Remus' eyebrows rose. Devante looked over at Harry. "Can I show Remus and Kolos the whole conversation we just had? I get the feeling Remus at least knows some of it but not all."

Harry nodded sullenly and Devante closed his eyes. Remus gasped once then he too closed his eyes. Kolos merely stared into space. The three men were silent for a while then Devante and Remus opened their eyes again and the three men brought their attention back to the here and now. Remus swallowed twice before he was able to speak.

"You know Harry, you might just have a point about Albus," he said with a grim expression. "I never realised just how much he manipulated you over the years." He paused then continued quietly. "And me."

Kolos, who had been considering what he had seen, nodded in agreement. "Yes, it does seem that way." He looked over at Gwydion and Devante. "I think we need to bring the women in on this. This kind of manipulation is uncalled for and I take great offense to it. I think we need to make some plans."

The other two men grinned and, after gaining a nod of agreement from the now interested Harry, Devante closed his eyes and called a full meeting of the Daemon Sidhe.

Thanks for all the reviews. I'm glad you're all enjoying the fic!