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Batch 44 - The Phantom Librarian
Spewing out too many words since November 2003
Batch 44
You know, I really loved James and Harry in "Quicksilver and Snitches." How about Harry spending some quality time with his kids, nieces and nephews, and Teddy? Telling a story, perhaps?
for allie_meril

When the children were grown, Harry thought, it would be good to move to the country. He had always loved the Burrow, and here at Shell Cottage, he always felt that he could be somehow recharged and renewed. He didn't want to give up Sirius's house--it was the only part of his inheritance he really had, as he planned to give the gold to Teddy (he felt strongly that Sirius would want him to do this, as Sirius had loved Remus and Tonks a great deal)--but he hoped that one of the children would want it, and he and Ginny could find a nice, rambling old manse by the forest or the seaside, or maybe on the moors, where they could enjoy long, rambling walks and broomstick flights and picnics. It seemed a nice way to spend his old age, if he could manage to survive to enjoy it.

Meanwhile, he indulged himself in long, rambling walks along the sea cliff any time the family was gathered at Shell Cottage. He stopped at various points, looking out across the sea and striking absurdly heroic poses for his own amusement, as long as he was sure no one was looking--Harry Potter, The Boy Who Got A Beautifully Uneventful Home Life.

He'd been out for close to an hour when he came back around the last turn toward the cottage, and was bowled over by Victoire, who was running backwards to catch a Quaffle that had been lobbed at her. They tumbled backward onto the rocky ground, and the Quaffle bounced off of Victoire's chin and into Harry's face. He batted it away, and helped her to her feet.

She was blushing madly. "Sorry, Uncle Harry!" she said. "We were just playing ground-Quidditch."


She nodded. "Franklin Driscoll--he's in Teddy's year, Muggle-born?"

"I know Franklin."

"He made it up so he could keep practicing Quidditch over the summer. He tells his Muggle mates that it's just a game from school, and they all play it. He taught Donzo, and Donzo had them all doing it on tour this summer, and Teddy taught us, and really, it's quite fun." She smiled daffily.

"Teddy taught you something Quidditch-related?"

"Madly out of character, isn't it?"

Harry looked up. Teddy was at the top of the rise, a bat in one hand and an uncharmed Bludger in the other. He'd grown again over the summer, and looked more like Remus than ever, except that he was smiling and laughing. Harry raised a hand in greeting. "I should ask you security questions!"

Teddy laughed again. "Well, I'm not actually playing. I've got quite good at officiating, though."

"That makes more sense."

"And Victoire is way beyond the pitch. Toss the ball over, Vicky, it's going to Hugo."

Victoire growled at him over the nickname, then lobbed the Quaffle at him at high speed and ran up to join him. Harry quickened his pace and followed.

"If you're not playing," he said, "why do you have a Beater's bat?"

"To keep them in line," Teddy said, then grinned. "Rosie was playing Beater for the gold team, but she got bored. She said I ought to go in now, but you know, I think there's someone coming along with much more Quidditch experience than I have..."

Harry grabbed the bat and the Bludger and ran into the game, letting Teddy's laughter follow him.

"Dad!" James yelled. "You're on the other team!"

"They had an opening," Harry said, knocking the Quaffle from his hand, and noting the way the children had marked the teams with red and gold armbands. The ages were a good mix--Teddy had been careful there, though Harry joining in place of Rosie might skew it. The red team consisted of James, Al, Maurice Burke, Victoire, Story Shacklebolt, Aimee, and Percy's daughter Molly. The gold team--other than Rosie--consisted of Marie, Ruth Scrimgeour, Lily, Hugo, Percy's daughter Lucy, Artie, and now Harry. Muriel was running around the sidelines with a little yellow ball, and Harry guessed that she would periodically toss it into play.

"Daddy!" Lily ran at him and tackled him. "I'm a Chaser, like Mum! Lucy's Keeper and Maurice and Marie are Chasers too, and Molly's Seeker, and Ruthless is a Beater."

Harry leaned over to Ruth. "You know, I haven't actually played this position before."

"I'll carry you," she said.

Teddy blew a silver whistle to get play started again, and for the next half hour, Harry found himself happily occupied in a muddy session of the entirely non-existant game of "ground-Quidditch." Although Lily was actually quite good, having spent a good part of her short life at Harpies practices, Maurice and Marie weren't particularly good Chasers, and only Ruth's heroic efforts with the bat kept Al and Victoire from putting things completely out of reach. Harry was able to stop one shot from Story, and felt very good about that, at least until Aimee lobbed a Bludger at him and knocked him head over heels onto the grass, leaving a path clear for Al to thunder by him and whip the Quaffle at the tree Lucy was guarding. He hit it dead on. Harry was about to get up and back into the game when he saw Muriel dart out from the sidelines, waving the little yellow ball.

James and Molly rushed at her pell-mell. James got there first, and picked her up, "Snitch" and all, to spin her around. "We won!" he yelled

Molly grimaced.

The two teams ran to the center of the makeshift pitch and piled up comfortably. Harry wasn't quite young enough to just jump in, so he Conjured a cushion and sat down on the ground to watch them.

"Dad!" Lily yelled, and jumped onto his lap. "Tell the story about the broomstick."

"No!" Al groaned.

"It's a good story! Better than James's version of it." Lily stuck her tongue out. "Tell about Neville's Remembrall and the first flying lesson and Draco Malfoy and Professor McGonagall and Oliver and how it all came out!"

"I think everyone's heard that," Harry said.

"I haven't," Victoire offered. "I thought I'd heard all of them."

"I don't know it, either," Lucy said.

"And Ruth and Maurice and Story don't know it!" Lily nodded firmly, apparently deciding she'd won her case.

Harry looked around, judging their faces. Al and James were rolling their eyes fondly, and Rosie and Hugo were conferring on the subject of whether or not they'd heard it, but most of them seemed at least a little bit interested. "Well," he started, "when I first came to Hogwarts, I was a lot like a Muggle-born. I didn't know anything. And I was scared to death of flying lessons--I was sure I'd completely flub it, and in front of everybody. But the morning of the first flying lesson, Neville--that's Professor Longbottom to you Hogwarts students--got a present from his grandmother. It was a Remembrall, which was supposed to help him remember if he'd forgotten something. He was still carrying it when the lesson started..."

Lily settled herself on his lap, twining her warm little fingers through his, and Hugo lay down on his stomach, looking up to listen eagerly (he especially seemed to like the part where Harry told Draco to give the Remembrall back, and acted it out silently). Teddy and Ruth--who seemed to be back "on"--sat together holding hands, and halfway through, James started to interject his own embellishments.

"Shh," Lily said, "Daddy can tell it without you!"

"But it would be better with a dragon," James insisted.

"Well, there wasn't one," Rosie said.

Harry shook his head. "But there was sort of a treasure. Neville's Remembrall, remember? It was shiny and bright, and Draco threw it up in the air, and I went flying after it..." He finished the tale with his fear that McGonagall planned to expel him, only to find out that she'd been impressed by his flying. "And that," he said, "is how I learned to fly and got on the Quidditch team."

"So," Al said, "you were there mostly because you're a good flyer."

"Er... yes."

He smiled broadly, then stood up and said, "Let's have another game!"

I always loved your pre-DH future-fics with R and T with their kids, grandkids, great-grandkids etc, and one of the biggest disappointments about DH was that that couldn't happen...until the ending of DM. So how about some or all of the Lupinlets spending quality time with Granddad and GrannyDora.
for Anon

Dad was at work and Mum had to meet with a woman who thought she could grow water lilies in the desert, so Mira was left in charge, as long as she didn't leave the family parlor, or let any of the others leave, and did what Grannydora's portrait said. This wasn't exactly a chore, as Grannydora was much more amusing than Mum and Dad, and Granddad had joined her only a few minutes after Mum had gone to the greenhouse, so, in Mira's opinion, it was a nearly perfect afternoon.

Dad had bought eight landscapes for the parlor, so they'd have room to move about, and Grannydora was currently in one that showed a vast prairie, with mountains in the distance. A bison wandered up to her, and she patted its head. "All right," she said. "Who's this?" She wrinkled her nose, concentrated, and turned her hair long and blond, and her eyes china blue.

"Grandmere!" Sirius shouted.

"That's right!" Grannydora said. "Orry, can you show me your other granddad?"

Orry hunched his shoulders and made his awful pre-morphing face (Mira hoped that he'd soon learn to do it as easily as Dad did), and turned himself into Granddad Weasley, scars and all. Grannydora clapped.

The twins, Julia and Polly, were sitting at the base of a huge landscape that showed a mountain in the highlands. Granddad was crouched down at the bottom of the frame, pointing to something there. "Do you like this birdie, Polly?" he asked. "This is called a Warbling Warbird. They say it always sings the day before a battle."

"Birdie," Polly said, and patted the canvas. "Warba-birdie."

"I don't think they're ready for a Magical Creatures lesson, darling!" Grannydora called across the room.

"Nonsense. You're never too young for animals."

Grannydora laughed fondly, and ducked through a forest-scape, a seaside resort, and downtown London to come around to him. She reverted to her own form, crouched beside him, and put her hand on his shoulder. "Animals, yes. But they're two, dear. I think looking at the pretty birdie is enough."

"How does it know the day before?" Sirius asked, getting up and pulling baby Johnny's Moses basket over. "The bird. To sing."

Granddad gave a triumphant sort of smile, then said, "No one really knows. I'm not even sure it's true; it's just how it got its name. It may be that it sings a lot, but people only remember hearing it before there was a battle."

"Oh." Sirius sat down and planted his elbows on his knees. "But if it doesn't know, then why would they decide that it always sings before battles?"

"That's true," Mira said. "If people never heard it singing before battles, they'd be just as likely to say that robins did, or phoenixes."

"Answer that, Professor Lupin," Grannydora said, grinning. She sat down on a painted rock. "Meanwhile, I want to see the baby. Sirius, please!" She brightened her smile, and made her eyes twinkle.

Sirius plucked Johnny out of the basket and pushed him up at the portrait, holding his arms out to the side and dragging his toes along the floor. A long line of drool came from his mouth.

Mira shook her head. "That's not how to hold a baby, Sirius!"

"I'm showing Grannydora!"

"I can show her," Orry said, and swept the baby up, promptly going off balance and sitting down hard. Johnny hitched back his head to start crying from the shock.

Mira ran over and picked him up, but his face was going a deeply alarming shade of red that suggested the cry, when it came, was going to be of epic proportions. "Shh," she said. "It's okay, don't cry, don't..."

Johnny made a little clearing sound in his throat and was about to truly let loose when Grannydora's soft voice came from the portrait.

"Hush, little baby,
don't even sniff
Granny's going to Conjure you
a hippogriff...

Mira nodded eagerly and sang, "And if that hippogriff doesn't fly, Sissy's going to Conjure you, a... a..."

"...a dragon's eye," Granddad suggested.

"A dragon's eye," Mira finished.

Orry took it up. "And if that dragon's eye can't see, Orry's going to take you down to the sea."

"Excellent," Grannydora said, and clapped. Johnny's face was fading back to its normal pinkish color.

"He'll probably drop him in the sea," Sirius grumped.

Grannydora leaned forward and sang, "And if that big old sea's too cold, Sirius will..."

Sirius frowned deeply. "I don't know," he said.

"What rhymes with 'cold?'" Granddad asked.

"Gold," Sirius said. "Am I meant ot bring him a sack of gold?"

Granddad considered this. "You know, Sirius, I don't think a baby would especially appreciate it."

"I'll give him bread with no mold." Sirius smiled.

"Always welcome," Granddad said.

Mira was nudged roughly aside, and Julia grabbed the bottom of the portrait to pull herself up. "Go!" she said. "Go! Mo! So! Ko!"

"It's a little abstract," Grannydora said. "But excellent. Nice work, Julia." She clapped.

Mira wrapped the blankets back around the baby, and the song went on.

20 comments or Leave a comment
rdprice29 From: rdprice29 Date: February 2nd, 2009 08:39 am (UTC) (Link)

It is to my very everlasting disappointment that HP was published/was uber-popular ages after I was in college, because I would SO be one of the ones playing it!

Just when I thought I couldn't love your writing or your Teddy-verse any more, Fern...

Great job!
mk_tortie From: mk_tortie Date: February 2nd, 2009 08:56 am (UTC) (Link)
heh, I've actually played my own version of Ground Quidditch, and I can vouch for it being lots of fun :) Fantastic as always, Fern - I love Harry interacting with all the kids. Your adult Harry is so real!
From: (Anonymous) Date: February 2nd, 2009 09:00 am (UTC) (Link)

Did Harry really just do superhero poses?

Oh Fern, These where both phenomenal! I loved them! I loved Harry posing (and making sure no one saw!) every now and then as he walked along the shore at Shell Cottage. I really do think you capture the essence of J.K. Rowling's characters when you write! I've also thought that Harry would eventually decide to live next to the ocean (or something like it), since he really enjoyed the peaceful feeling in DH.

Him telling his first broom ride made me feel all warm and fuzzy inside! It was really cute to read all of the reactions to it all, what can I say other than it was perfection!

Now onto to the other one! Loved it! I enjoyed the song that was sang, Julia's contribution was just adorable! Sirius' showing his Grannydora his newest brother was funny.

"That's not how to hold a baby, Sirius!"

Loved it!

Thank you for writing so much and not stopping, even when you have every right to! Now I'm not saying you should stop, but man, I certainly WOULD feel burned out after writing more than 88 short stories in just over a two month period!

I just wanted to drop a line or two to say a loved them both equally! I can't wait for more whenever that may be!

sgt_majorette From: sgt_majorette Date: February 2nd, 2009 09:04 am (UTC) (Link)

"But it would be better with a dragon," James insisted.

Little Sirius showing Grannydora the slobbering baby was pretty good anyway...
beceh From: beceh Date: February 2nd, 2009 11:11 am (UTC) (Link)
Loved both of them :-)
From: kobegrace Date: February 2nd, 2009 02:28 pm (UTC) (Link)
*snickers* My friends and I were playing ice hockey with brooms and cricket bats for clubs and balls Quidditch the other day. It was intense. Good times, man. Good times.
malinbe From: malinbe Date: February 2nd, 2009 02:30 pm (UTC) (Link)
I hadn't really thought about it, but how convenient it is to have portraits that can babysit your children.

Harry was adorable. And ground quidditch sounds awesome.
From: (Anonymous) Date: February 2nd, 2009 04:19 pm (UTC) (Link)
Loved Harry's heroic pose, and his interaction with the children.

But I loved Remus and Dora with their grandchildren even more--Mira's thinking Grannydora's more amusing than Mum and Dad, Remus trying to teach the twins and getting the others interested, Dora singing a lullaby to baby Johnny and the others taking it up...just fantastic, and exactly what I was hoping to see...it's just so nice to see them being able to be grandparents after all, and know that Mira, Orry and the rest will have the wonderful every-day sorts of childhood memories of them that Teddy never got a chance to experience. I mean, it would just be a crime for nine little Lupinlets to remember Granddad and Grannydora as stones in a graveyard they went to visit occasionally, instead of as people they know and love, as you've depicted here.
In short, much love for Granddad and Granny! Remus and Tonks. They're fabulous, Fern.
From: (Anonymous) Date: February 2nd, 2009 04:27 pm (UTC) (Link)
These were both great, Fern.

Just a question about the kids, though:
In a ficlet you did on the first page, where Mira shows Karina the tower, you had them six years apart, with Mira as head girl in Karina's first year. Have you decided to rerite that differently, with Mira out of school when Karina starts, or does this just go in the "oh, dear, maths" category?
This second one was lovely nonetheless, and I wouldn't want to change it at all, but if you were going to stick with the original arrangement, you could always substitute Karina for Johnny, or put her between Johnny and the twins, so that she'd be one here and Mira would be seven...
I think I'm thinking far too much about this. Sorry, Fern.
From: (Anonymous) Date: February 2nd, 2009 05:22 pm (UTC) (Link)


under what kind of entry do you allow people to ask for fic requests? (like the ones above)

under "Batch" or you write something like "Request Call"?

thank you
From: jme1374 Date: February 4th, 2009 02:38 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: question...

Fern will occasionally do a "challenge call" and respond to all the requests that she receives in a few hours to a day. (She posts again to close the call)

Before Thanksgiving (end of November, if you're not from the USA), she did a challenge call that was open for 3 days, and is *still* writing the results.

We all love it VERY VERY much, but I for one don't expect her to do another challenge call anytime soon; I think we've overloaded her. THANK YOU, FERN!
From: (Anonymous) Date: February 6th, 2009 08:24 pm (UTC) (Link)

Re: question...thanks

thanks for the clarification

since Thanksgiving?! *I'm familiar with US holidays* wow. that's a lot of requests.

do you know what was the final coundown? like...100 batches? or something?
etain_antrim From: etain_antrim Date: February 2nd, 2009 05:25 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh joy, two cheerful vignettes. Your grown-up Harry is always a pleasure -- I like him more than canon Harry, even though I can see his evolution from the canon. And Teddy's family is just as delightful.

Thank you, Fern! I continue to enjoy your still-being-delivered presents.
purple_ladybug1 From: purple_ladybug1 Date: February 2nd, 2009 05:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
Harry and the kids are SO CUTE! Seriously, this is completely adorable. Harry is such a good father.
From: severely_lupine Date: February 2nd, 2009 06:59 pm (UTC) (Link)
"and looked more like Remus than ever, except that he was smiling and laughing." Oh, that's... just sad. Sad because it's true.

LOL, I love that last bit from Al. I can't remember if your Al is a Slytherin or not, but that seems like a very Slytherin thing to notice.

From: (Anonymous) Date: February 2nd, 2009 08:47 pm (UTC) (Link)
I loved both of these, especially the first one. "He stopped at various points, looking out across the sea and striking absurdly heroic poses for his own amusement"--priceless.

And ground quidditch (or muggle quidditch), is excellent--a number of colleges have teams now, it's hilarious. Middlebury in VT even had a quidditch world cup this past fall.

scopart From: scopart Date: February 2nd, 2009 09:19 pm (UTC) (Link)
Harry plus adorable children (and ground quidditch!) makes me melt with happy. I think it's especially heartwarming because Harry sort of missed out on his own childhood.

"...and he and Ginny could find a nice, rambling old manse by the forest or the seaside, or maybe on the moors, where they could enjoy long, rambling walks and broomstick flights and picnics. It seemed a nice way to spend his old age..."

Perfect. It's so nice to see Harry daydreaming about growing old happily. For some reason, it just never gets old to be reminded that he finally got the happy ending he so deserves.

Thanks so much for sticking with all these ficlets.
From: (Anonymous) Date: February 3rd, 2009 08:26 am (UTC) (Link)
"For some reason, it just never gets old to be reminded that he finally got the happy ending he so deserves."

You know, I think is the first time I've realized... I agree with that statement. And that's only because of your writing, Fern. Your stories about Harry's happily ever after are the only things that make me anything other than apathetic and/or resentful that he'd gotten it. (Apathetic, that is, because I really don't care much for Harry, though I don't actively dislike him, and resentful due to all the characters I liked more who didn't get a happily ever after of their own.)

- Samus McAslan
From: (Anonymous) Date: February 3rd, 2009 08:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
Oh man... ground Quidditch. I'm jealous.
We actually bought a couple of brooms for our little DH release party, but then couldn't get enough people to play. Ah well. "Veritaserum" and "Polyjuice" made funny games as well.
But I'm still jealous. Even though I hate ball games.

~Hermione Stranger~
summoner_lenne9 From: summoner_lenne9 Date: February 8th, 2009 03:18 am (UTC) (Link)
Ok, I loved the Wizarding version of Mockingbird, especially since they were just talking about the bird that sings before a battle. And it kinda shows Teddy life- death and beauty and wonder and then happiness and sillyness. If that makes sense.

I'm also over analyzing. :)
20 comments or Leave a comment