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The morning after school began, Bowman Jenkins came across the garden to bring Harry some fresh rosemary and leeks from his food-garden, which could not be called a vegetable patch by virtue of being neither small enough to be called a "patch" nor confined to vegetables. He found Harry sitting up one of the walnut trees which flanked the little cottage, eating an apple and reading a book.

"Good morning, young Harry!" he called up. "Brung ye some greens!"

"Thank you, Mr. Jenkins!" Harry called down. "I'll be down in a second -- "

"No need, I'll set 'em here," Bowman said, plonking the small basket down next to the tree. He and Mrs. Jenkins had not been let in on the Fidelius; they had accepted Harry's explanation of "it's for your own protection" with placid cheerfulness. It wasn't, of course; it was simply too easy for someone to cast an imperio on the pair.

"What's that yer reading, then?" Bowman asked, as he began to gather up the walnuts which Harry's morning climb had shaken out, into a bright red pail.

"It's all about cups," Harry said, holding it up. The cover was blazoned with Chalices of the Isles and a gaudy photograph of a twinkling, ruby-crusted cup. "Famous ones, mostly."

"Well, they'd hardly write a book about t'ordinary ones," Bowman agreed. "Mr. Lupin off to work all right?"

"Yes, thanks; he says your wife's apple butter is what gets him out of bed in the morning," Harry grinned.

"Aye, tis a prize-winner," Bowman said. "Ye wait until Christmas, she does up a cranberry sauce ye won't believe. She says it's good to see ye resting a bit, like. She heard from Miss Tonks that ye aren't much one to lay about."

"Not much, no," Harry said. "And I don't really like it now, but it doesn't seem to be avoidable. I'm...looking for something, and until I find it..."

"Oh? And what might that be?"

Harry swung his leg over the branch he was sitting on and dropped to the ground, lightly. Bowman smiled at him.

"If you were going to hide something," Harry said, leaning back against the tree's trunk, "Something really important, something your life depended on, where would you hide it?"

"Not in a bank?"

"No -- if you didn't trust anyone, or locks and vaults."

Bowman looked thoughtful. "Maybe in a jar of jam in t'cellar -- lots of jam jars down there..."

"If you wanted to keep it far away from you though, in a place nobody could find. Or would want to find."

"Somewhere nobody goes, then," Bowman mused. "Like deep inna forest?" he shuddered. "I do hate a forest. Not enough light for t'little plants as want to grow."

He glanced at his rosebushes as he said it, and Harry nodded. Bowman was one of nature's gardeners.

"All dark and creepy," Bowman continued. "No thank ye. Couldn't get me within a mile of t'forest. Or a sheep farm."

"A sheep farm?"

"Aye. I don't like sheep; crazy bastards and smell something awful," Bowman pronounced.

Harry grinned. Funny how people had little fears; Ron and his spiders, Bowman and sheep farms. Harry certainly wasn't terribly fond of closets or, if it came to that, evil monomaniacs.

"Or a cave. Can't abide caves," Bowman said. "Dark, drippy places."

"Yes, that's where -- " Harry said, then stopped himself.

"Now, burying in t'garden's no good for hidin' things, as the ground will tell," Bowman continued, oblivious to Harry's sudden amazement. "The number of times I've dropped a sickle only to turn it up two years later while furrowing a carrot-bed would make ye laugh. And for magical things it's right out of t'question, magical things always want to breathe, they'll work themselves up to t'surface -- are ye all right then, young Harry?" he asked.

"Yes -- thank you, Mr. Jenkins," Harry said. "I...I appreciate your help."

"Any time ye like," Bowman answered. "Got to go check on t'pumpkins -- have a bumper crop this year if t'flies don't kill them all."

He hefted the pail half-full of walnuts and ambled off across the garden.

We hide things where we think people won't go, and we think people won't go where we're afraid to go ourselves.

Harry battled the urge to bolt off for the floo; instead he very carefully picked up the basket of rosemary and leeks, carrying it inside along with his book. He worried the thought like a loose tooth as he set the book on the kitchen table and ran water through the basket, washing its contents.

Tom Riddle doesn't like people, he doesn't trust anyone, he reveres history, he worships his ancestors --

And he's afraid of death.

Graveyards. Would he bury the cup with his father -- no, that'd be the first place an enemy would look, and Bowman had said magic things liked to seek out the open air.

A mausoleum? Too easily robbed. Harry had seen mausoleums with locks on the doors to keep vandals and homeless people out.

Wild ideas circles in his head. Madam Tussaud's, in London. There were death masks there and a chamber of horrors; Helga Hufflepuff's cup would be just one more prop for the wax figures. Churches had stones engraved with the names of their dead patrons, under one of those would work well -- but no, Tom Riddle would never honour a dead Muggle in that fashion. Likewise his orphanage, that was absolutely out of the question, and Harry was suddenly certain he was on the right track with this idea.

Were there...museums of death? Places famous wizards had died? Where had Grindelwald met his end? For that matter, where had Helga Hufflepuff? Or Salazar Slytherin?

Why hadn't he paid attention in History of Magic?

He could look it up, but he knew who would know already and even better, she'd have ideas too, probably smarter ones.

Now he did move quickly, running to the floo in the living room and tossing a handful of powder on the fire before crouching and sticking his head in.

"The Burrow!" he cried. The world tip-tilted for a minute, but when it ended he could see the tidy, shabby kitchen of The Burrow with Molly Weasley standing over a large cake of some sort.

"Harry! What a lovely surprise," she said, leaning over the fire. "How are you, dear?"

"Fine, Mrs. Weasley," Harry said hurriedly. "Is Hermione around? I really need to talk to her."

"Hermione? Of course not, dear."

"Well, will she be back soon? Where is she? Can I come through to find her?"

"Of course you can't, don't be silly," Molly said, surprising him.

"Why not? It's really important. Or you could send Ginny -- "

"Harry, dear, what are you forgetting?" Molly asked, patiently.

"Forgetting? What -- oh." Harry slapped his forehead. "Of course. She's at school, with the others."

He must have looked as dismayed as he felt; Molly gave him a reassuring smile. "I'm sure if it's urgent you could floo the school -- "

"No, no. It's not urgent, really, I was just...excited about something and I wanted to tell her about it," Harry said, disappointed.

"Well, you could tell me, dear," Molly offered.

"No, thank you, Mrs.'s not really that exciting, when I come to think of it. Hermione would like it, that's all."

"All right. Stand back a bit, Harry, I'm sending something through."

Harry leaned away from the fireplace and waited; after a second, a pan of fudge clattered onto the hearth. Harry picked it up, feeling rather gratified.

"Thank you, Mrs. Weasley," he said, leaning forward again. "Sorry to interrupt your cooking."

"It's my pleasure, dear. Is Remus looking after you?"

"Yes," Harry said, because it was easier than fighting about whether or not he needed looking after.

"Good. Floo us anytime," Molly continued. Harry sat back on his heels as the floo connection was closed.

At school. Of course.

Everyone was; Ron and Hermione, Remus, Sirius -- Seamus, Dean, the Creeveys, probably even Crabbe and Goyle. And Harry was not.

The magnitude of the step he'd taken had only begun to sink in, really.

He ate a bite of fudge, thoughtfully. Well, that was that, then; Molly's practical, sensible approach had effectively sobered him up. He'd just have to ask Remus to pass the message on to Hermione tomorrow. Remus would be excited about it, he was sure. What would Hermione have done, anyway? She might have even said it was a stupid idea. It probably was, in reality.

Harry carried the fudge back into the kitchen and sat down. But if she didn't say it was stupid...

She'd make a LIST.

Harry promptly pulled a sheet of parchment towards him and picked up his quill -- well, really, Remus' quill. Remus tended to leave his books and writing supplies on the table, stacked and messily spread out everywhere. The comfortable communism of dormitory life had taught Harry and Sirius that his writing supplies were, therefore, public property; Remus occasionally got his revenge on the pair of looters by eating their ice cream.

He dipped the quill in the inkwell and drew a long, straight line down the sheet, dividing it in half. At the top of one half he wrote WHERE and on top of the other half he wrote WHY. And then, nibbling the quill, he added (NOT?) under WHY.

He sat back. This looked very official and Hermionesque, even though his handwriting was somewhat blotchier.

Under WHERE he began to make a list. Graveyard, Mausoleum, Wax Museum, Church...


Sirius had been given a schedule at breakfast, as if he were indeed a student; McGonagall instructed him to sit in on the classes, assist the Professors as necessary, take notes so that he would know what to teach the other students, and in general not act like a hooligan. Taking notes was a novel experience for Sirius, who normally simply drank in the lecture and cribbed (from Moony or Peter) anything he missed while lobbing bugs into the inkwells of the girls across the aisle.

He was, apparently, going for maximum coverage this time round; he had class with everyone from first-year Slytherins through seventh-year Gryffindors. Remus, having arrived early, was devouring an enormous breakfast next to him. The older man tapped the schedule with his fork.

"Watch out. Those Hufflepuff firsts are little monsters," he said. "Loyal and true they might be but well-mannered they are not. You get just one of them acting up and the rest'll protect him to the death."

"Thanks. Look, after lunch I have you and the sixth-year Ravenclaws."

"They were second-years when I taught. Good students. I hope they still are," Remus said. "Listen, Padfoot, we ought to talk about my class. About my teaching in general."

"What about it?"

"Well..." Remus looked vaguely uncomfortable. "Remember our fourth year, when you punched Angelo Smith for stealing my books?"

"Yeah, I think so. Nobody ever stole your books again, did they?"

"No, and I was grateful enough for that, but...well, things are different now. Everyone knows what I am."

"You're not a what, you're a who," Sirius scowled.

"Let's not argue semantics. Everyone knows, and not everyone is happy about it. There are going to be things said and no doubt pranks pulled. I want you to let me deal with them in my own fashion, all right? You can't go around punching children, you're supposed to be respectable now."

"I'm not going to hear words against you and not do anything," Sirius protested.

"Fine. Take House points -- you're allowed to do that. But nothing more, all right? I know you. I know you have a temper, Padfoot. All I'm asking is that you try to keep it in check."

"Fine, fine. But when Slytherin end up in the negative points range by the end of the day, don't say I didn't warn you."

"So long as no-one ends up in the hospital wing." Remus lifted his head as a mass exodus slowly began. "We'd better finish -- I'll see you after lunch."

Sirius nodded and crammed the last slice of toast into his mouth as he stood, shouldering his bag and following Remus out into the corridor. He had to face Slughorn and the Hufflepuff first-years now, and he squared his shoulders for the fray.

It was true that the Hufflepuff firsts were bad; the class-clown was protected by his comrades, but Sirius would give Slughorn this -- the man picked out the troublemaker and deftly made friends, preventing too much carnage from going on. The class was easy, but Sirius learned one or two things he'd forgotten about over the summer, simple stuff which he would have known how to look up but wouldn't have known off from memory. Slughorn tried to smarm up to him after class; Sirius pled Divination with the Slytherins and bolted.

He had yet to meet Firenze, the centaur who taught half the Divs classes; this time around he had Trelawney, who had been hired after he -- well, the other Sirius -- would have graduated. He joined a crowd of noisy third-year Slytherins at the bottom of the ladder which led into the classroom and cuffed the heads of a few boys who were lingering and trying to look up the robes of the girls climbing upwards.

"Ah...yes. Welcome, welcome," Trelawney greeted them, dreamily. To her credit, she didn't smell like cooking sherry. Yet. "Mr. Padfoot, what a pleasure it is to see you again."

"Professor," Sirius said, unaccountably unnerved by this foggy little room full of footstools. "How's that third eye?"

"You jest now, but soon you will understand...yes..." she replied. "I am glad you have come to sit at the foot of knowledge, Mr. Padfoot."

"Which?" Sirius asked. She just made it so easy...

"I beg your pardon?"

"Which one's the foot of knowledge?"

She summoned all her severity for a single look. Minerva McGonagall had more in her little finger.

"You will not mock the divinatory arts when you have seen them for yourself," she said, sweeping away to attend to the Slytherins, who were poking about in her tea things. Sirius rolled his eyes and settled himself at a table in the back where he could watch the little buggers and hex anyone who got out of line.

Unlike Potions, where Slughorn had ignored Sirius in favour of actually teaching the class, Trelawney kept calling him up to the front to participate in her little fortune-telling games. He drew three tarot cards (two, three, four of staves, after which she gave up) and drank a cup of somewhat rank tea. When his tea leaves drained out of the cup completely as he poured out the last of the liquid, she demanded that he try bibliomancy. She gave a brief lecture on the usage of various books, which sounded reasonably accurate, while Sirius selected one of many identical, blank-covered books and opened it.

"And have you gone mad yet?" inquired the boy in his way, without first saying hello.

"No I have not," Polaris replied over the hiss and crackle of the eggs in the pan. The boy knocked the deepwoods snow from his boots and held out his gloved hands; Polaris scooped a potato from the boiling pan with a spoon and laid it in the open cup of the boy's fingers.

"That is known as entropy," I said to the boy, "the gradual cooling of the universe. Out of cold nothing we became and into cold nothing we go."

"Shan't we continue to do it, then?" the boy asked, and Polaris' laughter filled the room.

"Why have you come here today, boy?" he inquired.

"I've brought you a present," the boy answered, gnawing carefully on the hot potato.

Sirius stared down at the page, startled. He turned to the frontispiece; there it was. Animagus Winter, by Ellis Graveworthy.

"Nigel," Trelanwey said, and Sirius realised she was talking to him. "Close the book and reopen it."

Sirius slammed the book shut perhaps harder than he meant to, and opened it once more.

"The first sentence at the top of the page."

Sirius looked down.

Polaris refused to stay; he pled the coming storm, but I knew he had not wanted to hear these words: "There can be no transformation without love, Pol; even Ovid knew that."

"Clearly you must make Divination your passion if you are to succeed in anything," Trelawney said. Sirius gave her a skeptical look which made the third-years snicker to themselves.

After lunch he had three more classes -- Defence Against the Dark Arts, Arithmancy, and History of Magic. It was bizarre to see Moony standing in front of a classroom, teaching with a sort of gentle humour that he was just beginning to develop as a sixteen-year-old. Sirius saw only echoes of his Moony in the grey-haired man at the chalkboard, but he saw enough for it to be a truly surreal experience. One of the Ravenclaws made a smart remark about Dark Creatures which set Sirius' teeth on edge and would have sent Remus into a withdrawn misery as a boy; now Remus simply shot back a quick, witty retort that left the girl blushing furiously and the rest of the class giggling at her.

He was...well, a good teacher. He made things interesting and didn't condescend. Students lingered after class to talk to him. No wonder McGonagall had called him back in spite of everything.

By the end of the day, between keeping order, taking notes, having his non-fortune told thrice over, and remembering to answer to the name of Nigel, Sirius was ready to fall asleep over his dinner. Remus had gone home to Fourteen Back for his own; he told Sirius he didn't want Harry to be eating alone, which was fine and good except that then Sirius was eating alone, or worse --

"Padfoot old fellow! You can't eat down here all alone," Slughorn said, appearing at his elbow just as he was helping himself to some dinner rolls.

"Alone?" Sirius asked, eyeing the high table. Most of the professors, save Remus and Trelawney, were present. "No, it's quite crowded in here, really."

"I meant down at this end of the table -- abandoned by Lupin and all," Slughorn continued. "Come on, we're having dinner in my office. I've asked the house-elves to cater it particularly."

"I really do have to plead duty," Sirius said calmly. "Who knows what might happen if I show up late from your dinner this evening? Perhaps some other time."

And, to cement his refusal, he took an enormous bite of buttered dinner roll. Slughorn, looking confused, retreated. Sirius licked butter from his lips and felt a little more satisfied with the world. Down below, he could see empty places where Granger and Weasley were missing; probably the "few Seventh-Years" Slughorn had mentioned the day before.

He played a matching game, picking out students he'd met that day and seeing how many he could put names to. He did pretty well, too, but then he had a good head for names and faces. Little Worthington looked like he'd found some comrades in Gryffindor. All to the good. No picking on the littlest ones; the kids who really needed picking on were the confident, cool ones.

When the coffee appeared after dinner, he drank the whole cup hurriedly; his day was far from over, after all. From now until nine, he was supposed to be in his office next to the library, available in case he was needed by any of the students. He rather hoped nobody would need him, this being the first day of classes.

The office was a nice one, if a bit dusty; furnished with a bookshelf, desk, three chairs and a couple of lamps, it seemed bare, but he could easily fill it. He had his stipend, and some money from Harry's vaults. There were doubtlessly bookshops in Hogsmeade.

Someone, probably a house-elf, had left a kettle, pot, and a couple of elderly teacups on a strange cabinet next to the bookshelf. Sirius opened it to discover a tin of tea, a jar of sugar, a box of chocolate biscuits, and a small basket of fruit. He moved the fruit to the table and set his bag down next to it, unpacking the school books he'd been told to buy and putting them on the bare bookshelf. They looked lonely.

He heard giggling out in the hallway, followed by echoes of "You ask!" "No, you ask!" "Dare you to ask!" and then louder giggles and gasps as footsteps approached.

A small face appeared, about four feet off the ground, around the edge of his open doorway.

"Worthington," Sirius said with a grin. "Don't stand there in the doorway, someone'll mistake you for a knob and grab you."

The boy grinned shyly and came just inside, looking around him in awe.

"The house-elves found my wand," he blurted, and Sirius could see him clutching it tightly in one hand. "Thank you, Mr. Padfoot."

"I didn't really do anything," Sirius shrugged. "Have a seat, I thought I'd put some tea on."

"Yes, sir," the boy said politely, seating himself in front of Sirius' desk. "Are you new here too?"

Sirius laughed as he filled the kettle with water and tapped it to heat it. "I guess that's one way of putting it. This is my first year here as a tutor, anyway. Did you need help with something?"

"Well, it's my shoes, sir," he said, taking what looked like a pair of brown wing-tips out of his bag. "I was wondering if you'd change them back?"

"Oh! Right you are, on the desk they go, and -- finite incantatem!" Sirius said. The brown melted away to reveal a nice, sturdy pair of well-worn trainers. "That's a useful little charm. Help yourself to the fruit."

Alexander took a pear, nibbling it, eyes wide and round as saucers.

"How was your first day? Learn anything interesting?"

"Everything's interesting," Alexander replied.

"Well, yes, that's true. What was that commotion in the hall, by the way?"

The boy sniffed. "Some of the big girls were fighting about something. I think they wanted to come ask you a question."

"Ask me a question, huh," Sirius asked, snickering. Alexander grinned at him. "Did you have a question for me?"

"Well..." Alexander looked uncertain. "I'm taking Transfiguration and I don't really understand it. Do you know stuff about Transfiguration?"

Sirius laughed and poured the tea. "Do I ever..."


Harry was waiting impatiently for Remus to return that evening, and the older man was barely through the floo before Harry bounded up to him anxiously.

"Hi, Harry -- is something wrong?" Remus asked, setting his briefcase down next to the hearth.

"No! I have a list," Harry blurted. Remus paused.

"A list?" he asked. " list? Or...a list of...victims?"

Harry grinned. "Come see."

Remus, still wary, followed Harry into the kitchen (where, he tried not to notice, there was absolutely no evidence of any form of dinner being cooked).

"I have this idea," Harry said, "that Voldemort may be hiding his horcruxes somewhere he himself doesn't like to go -- he hid one of them in the Gaunt house, and the locket was in a cave full of inferi. He's afraid of graveyards and places like that, that's why he uses them, because he assumes everyone else is, too."

Remus accepted the list Harry gave him. It began rather scratchily but, as it went further, the handwriting evened out and quotes from books started to appear. He glanced at the kitchen table, which appeared to contain as many of Harry's books as it did his own.

"This is..." he paused, groping for the proper word to express his pride and pleasure at Harry's efforts. He glanced at Harry, who looked already crestfallen. "Really quite outstanding work, Harry! How on earth did you think of it?"

Harry's sudden, radiant smile was good to see. Remus settled in at the kitchen table, dinner forgotten, while Harry began opening books and explaining his theory in more detail. The list was a long one, but it significantly narrowed their search from Everything (Everywhere) to Certain Places (Probably in Britain). Harry had even documented starting points -- the locations where the four Founders were said to be interred and the site where Grindelwald was killed.

"Nobody says where he was buried," Harry said, when Remus reached that point.

"I don't..." Remus hesitated. "I don't think there was enough left of him to be buried, Harry. Albus was nothing if not thorough, you know."

"How did he do it?" Harry asked. "Nowhere seems to be able to say. None of the books, I mean."

"He never said. At the time -- and recall, this was well before you or I were born or even thought of by our infant parents -- people asked him, but he refused to tell. It was rather a big deal, at the time, that he wouldn't reveal what he'd done. But..." Remus spread his hands. "...that was fifty years ago, and people forget -- it never occurs to all but the most scholarly to ask. It's enough to know that he did it, I suppose."

"Did he ever tell you?"

"No!" Remus laughed. "Why on earth would he tell me?"

"You seem to know this kind of thing, that's all."

"I was fond of history at school. And still am, really. I wonder..."

Harry looked at him inquiringly.

"I wonder if he could have stopped Tom Riddle -- if he would have, if he hadn't been busy with Grindelwald. And I wonder if he himself thought about that, either. Sometimes I think that's why he stayed at Hogwarts."

"I don't understand."

"Well, as penance for failing with Voldemort. Or in order to ensure it never happened again. He was offered high posts in the Ministry, not to mention the Minister of Magic position. He was offered professorships at the most prestigious magical schools in the world. Instead, he stayed at Hogwarts -- which has its own prestige, but it doesn't hold a candle to Chair of Wizardry at the Moscow Institute, just for example. But it's as well he stayed, I think. He seemed happy there."

Harry rested his chin in his hands, looking down at the list. "Will I live as long as Dumbledore did?"

"Well, if you're lucky and keep out of the way of lorries, I should think so," Remus said. "Most wizards do."

"My parents and grandparents too?"

"Your father's parents, certainly. They were older when they had James -- they died about a year before he did, which I think is one reason he wanted to start a family sooner rather than later. Dumbledore, now, probably...well. There's no point in speculation. But yes, you have another hundred and fifty years ahead of you, Harry, give or take."

"And you?" Harry asked, as Remus brushed a lock of grey hair out of his eyes.

"Werewolves don't die natural deaths," Remus answered. "I looked it up once. Supposedly I ought to live to a ripe old age -- but that's if I don't kill anyone, or get shot by some overzealous bigot, or fatally harm myself. Or kill myself -- that's a popular one." He looked amused at Harry's reaction. "Don't worry, I'm not planning on it. It's interesting, you know, that you haven't asked these questions until now."

"I never thought of them until now."

"And this is better work than you ever did for any of my Dark Arts essays, I notice," Remus said with a gently teasing grin. "Keep at it -- we'll call an Order meeting this weekend and start sending out search parties. We might be able to use the locket, too -- if the pieces of the soul are drawn to each other, it may help."

There was a crash from the living room, and the pair of them exchanged knowing looks.

"Hi, Tonks," Harry called.

"Wotcha! Don't worry about me, just knocked over the poker," she called from the living room. She emerged into the kitchen a minute later, dusting her robes off. "Did I miss dinner?" she asked, looking disappointed.

"Oh -- dinner," Harry said. "I forgot about it -- Bowman brought over some...smelly cooking things and everything. There's some fudge Molly sent..."

"Curry," Tonks said succinctly. "Or some roast chicken from the pub. Come on, you two bookworms, let's go."

"Bossy, isn't she?" Remus asked Harry, who grinned. "Bring your list, Harry, and we'll see what the Auror thinks of it."

Harry, still smiling, rolled the list up and tucked it in his back pocket, following Tonks and Remus out into the alley. He felt one step closer to triumph, and combined with the pleasant glow of the setting sun and the way Remus had spoken to him -- not like a child but like a colleague -- Harry could ask for little more.

Except, some part of him pointed out, a gawky, half-grown black newfoundland dog romping ahead of them on the way to the pub.

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