“You don’t understand, Harry, nobody could understand unless they have lived with goblins. To a goblin, the rightful and true master of any object is the maker, not the purchaser. All goblin made objects are, in goblin eyes, rightfully theirs.”
“But it was bought –”
“– then they would consider it rented by the one who had paid the money. They have, however, great difficulty with the idea of goblin-made objects passing from wizard to wizard. You saw Griphook’s face when the tiara passed under his eyes. He disapproves. I believe he thinks, as do the fiercest of his kind, that it ought to have been returned to the goblins once the original purchaser died. They consider our habit of keeping goblin-made objects, passing them from wizard to wizard without further payment, little more than theft.”
Harry had an ominous feeling now; he wondered whether Bill guessed more than he was letting on.
“All I am saying,” said Bill, setting his hand on the door back into the sitting room, “is to be very careful what you promise goblins, Harry. It would be less dangerous to break into Gringotts than to renege on a promise to a goblin.”
“Right,” said Harry as Bill opened the door, “yeah. Thanks. I’ll bear that in mind.”
As he followed Bill back to the others a wry thought came to him, born no doubt of the wine he had drunk. He seemed set on ––– to become just as reckless a godfather to Teddy Lupin as Sirius Black had been to him.