Honoria does an interview with five of the pups rescued by Remus, and it's very effective in fighting Mathilde's charming editorial, but as the full moon approaches, people are starting to realize that siding publicly with the Ministry may put them in the bullseye for attacks by Greyback's pack, and since Mathilde has suggested they can get through Apparition barriers, they don't exactly feel secure. Three days before the full moon, Teddy is in DADA when Harry appears and asks if he can take him out of class.
Table of Contents and Summary So Far
Teddy followed Uncle Harry complacently halfway down the corridor before it hit him--Uncle Harry had never pulled him from a class.
He stopped walking. "Granny--!"
Uncle Harry turned, his eyes wide. "No, Teddy, I'd have told you right away. Andromeda's fine. Everyone's fine. It's entirely a different matter." He blew a harsh breath out and ran a hand through his hair. "Sorry. I didn't even think of that. A million other things going through my head. But Andromeda's fine. Incredibly, unbelievably stubborn, but fine." He turned up the stairs, and Teddy followed. "She's insisting on staying at St. Mungo's. We can secure St. Mungo's. It's not that hard to make a fortress of it, and there are former Aurors there who were hurt in the war, but can still help keep guard."
"Guard?" Teddy sighed as they turned a corner and headed for the Headmistress's office. "The full moon."
"Greyback and Dubois have more or less promised an attack. They know we'll defend Hogwarts, and it won't be difficult to guess that we'll defend St. Mungo's and the Ministry, so we think they'll go for soft targets as well. Defense is going to be somewhat complicated. Chrysanthemum." They'd reached the griffin that guarded the door to the Headmistress's office, and it jumped aside. They didn't talk as the rotating staircase carried them up.
The door at the top was open, and Teddy noticed immediately that there were several people inside who weren't normally at Hogwarts. George Weasley stood up as they came in. Beside him, Lee Jordan was lounging in a chair, and Ron was leaning on the wall by the window, looking dour. Fleur was pacing behind Professor Sprout, and a plain-looking youngish man with thinning mousy hair was fiddling nervously with a silver gadget Teddy didn't recognize. Behind him was Kingsley Shacklebolt, the Minister of Magic. There were no other students present.
Professor Sprout waved them inside. "Come in, Mr. Potter. Mr. Lupin." She waited for them to take seats, then said, "Mr. Weasley has hinted at what you've come about. And if it's what he's hinted, I hope you have a very good explanation for yourself, because exposing Hogwarts to more violence is not something I care to do."
"Hogwarts is going to be targeted no matter what we do," Uncle Harry said. "But Greyback and Dubois aren't Voldemort, and the pack is barely trained in magic. Hogwarts can be defended. We're also defending St. Mungo's. But we can't protect every household if Mathilde Dubois has developed ways to get through Apparition borders. They'll anticipate that we'll put our biggest forces here, but they'll split up. We haven't left them a huge group. The children we found near Nurmengard don't think there are more than a handful left. You have a trained Auror here in Professor Robards--"
"Two," Kingsley Shacklebolt said.
Uncle Harry gave him a confused look; this apparently hadn't been in the script. "Kingsley, oughtn't you--"
"My son is here. If people complain about extra hands being spent at Hogwarts, I can always say I'm being protected rather than standing a watch."
"Complain?" Teddy asked.
Kingsley looked at him. "There's a sense that the Auror Division may have more interest in protecting Hogwarts than protecting the country as a whole."
"Their sense is right," Uncle Harry said. "But practically speaking, it's easy to defend a castle. That's what castles were built for, after all. The most surprising thing we could do is not be here. Be out there. At least as Aurors. Hogwarts won't be undefended. The staff is top notch, Kingsley will be here. Ginny will come with the children--"
"Yes," Fleur said. "Zey will be easier to watch if zey are 'ere. I will be 'ere as well."
"That's what we need to ask," Uncle Harry said. There are several families that are particularly targeted, and we'd like them to be safe while we watch the softer targets."
Professor Sprout shook her head. "Harry, this is... surely if the most targeted families are here, we ought to have an Auror presence."
"You have an Auror presence," Kingsley said. "Just an unannounced one. And the presence of many veterans of a more subtle war."
"Meanwhile," George said, "I've worked more on the spell we used for the Hogsmeade weekend in October, so that people can call for help immediately if they need it. Anyone who wants it can come to the shop and get it free of charge. They'll be able to call the Aurors. But the Aurors wouldn't be able to Apparate immediately out of Hogwarts--they'll need to be outside."
Sprout considered this for a very long time, then said, "How many are you talking about?"
"My family," Harry said. "Ron and Hermione's children--Ron will be out with the Aurors and Hermione will be watching St. Mungo's with Bill. Bill and Fleur's children. George, Sophie, and little Freddie. Lee and Verity. And Dennis and his family."
"Angelina and Colin," the man Teddy didn't know said. "She's still weak from having him, but I'm bloody well going to be out there prowling about. I still think it's that perverse bastard who twisted my brother's neck."
"We'll set up a watch," Uncle Harry said, not arguing. Lee and George, you'll be in the Owlery. Teddy, you'll stay with them all night."
"What? I'm to be babysat? There are other people he's more interested in by now, I'll bet he's even got a problem with Honoria, I'll--"
"Teddy. I'm asking for your trust."
Teddy fell silent, but felt mutinous. Uncle Harry went on with his proposal to turn the Great Hall into a large campground for the families. The doors would be barricaded, and adults would be on hand an on watch the whole time, in case Mathilde's spell was strong enough to Apparate directly there, though he found it unlikely. Meanwhile, other adults would be keeping watch--Lee and George in the Owlery (while babysitting Teddy), Kingsley patrolling the corridors with Professors Robards and Longbottom, the rest of the staff in their well-known crisis pattern. "You managed to keep me alive for six years here," he finished. "I trust you and Professor Flitwick and Professor Slughorn with my children."
Professor Sprout seemed to surrender. "All right. I don't like it, but I see your point. We'll defend Hogwarts. And anyone you put here."
"Good," Uncle Harry said. "I'd like to take George and Lee up to the Owlery--Teddy as well--to set up the best"--he paused--"viewpoint."
"Very well." Sprout shook her head. "This had best be the end of it, though."
Uncle Harry signaled to Lee and George, and they walked out ahead. Now that the meeting was over, they were reminiscing fondly about other trips to this office and punishments they'd received with the first Fred, George's brother. Uncle Harry purposely stayed a few steps behind them, and when they turned to head up the stairs to the Owlery, he drew Teddy aside.
"First of all," he said, "Greyback may have acquired new targets, but he hasn't been sending any of them love notes. He doesn't feel any of them are owed to him. You aren't in the same category as the others."
Uncle Harry held up his hand. "And you're not going to the Owlery for extra protection."
Teddy had been so busy forming arguments in his mind that he almost didn't register this, and didn't know what to say when he did, other than, "What?"
"I don't want you in this fight, if there is one," Uncle Harry said. "And you will stay in the Owlery. I don't want to hear anything about you rushing off, no matter how much you think you need to."
This time, Uncle Harry just stopped him with a look. "But if it were just about protecting you, I'd pull you out of school and send you to visit your cousin Draco in New Zealand. Or I'd send you on your own to Hawaii. Or Siberia. Viktor Krum has a Quidditch training camp there, and frankly, it's quite tempting to suddenly decide you ought to be a Quidditch star. Instead, I'm sending you to the Owlery with George Weasley, who once gave me something that's very helpful in keeping an eye on Hogwarts."
Understanding started to dawn. "They know about..."
"I assume they suspect, but I haven't told them you have it, or any of the new things you've discovered. But they know about the Map, and they used it--along with Fred--for years before they gave it to me. They've kept it secret."
Teddy felt dizzy and pleased--far from being treated like more of a child than the others, Uncle Harry was actually inviting him to help, as if he were Ron or George or Bill or Professor Longbottom. He was looking Teddy straight in the eye, man to man. And he was giving Teddy a chance to do something. Teddy nodded vigorously. "They can use it. I'll help them. I'll show them... are you really asking me to take a watch?"
"Yes." His face was pale and a little green. "I don't want to. I don't want you near this. But you are near it. And I need your help."