Beta'd by Black sparrow
'Shit, shit, shit? How the hell did they find me?' went through Harriet's head as she hastily moved through the crowd and in the direction of the entrance to the muggle world. She had only wanted to stock up on crystal foci and checkout some of the new Rune merchandise, both which couldn't be done via owl order and only fifteen minutes after her arrival in the wizarding alley an Auror search squad had already found her. Harriet was cursing her own stupidity, she should have been more careful and not lingered, but HOW had they found her so fast? With three quick steps she was out of the Leaky Cauldron and vanished into a side alley of Charring Cross Road where she disapparated.
'Well' she thought dryly the moment she was through her front door, her eyes fell on the bag in her hands, 'at least I got what I came for.'
Tried and frustrated Harriet sat down and thought back at her closest call yet, how the hell had they located her so fast in Diagon Alley? She had used some pretty heavy glamour charms and an overpowered notice-me-not. The minister must have finally lost his last marbles and allowed some fairly illegal monitoring charms on all public wizarding districts. Harriet sighed; well it looked like this was her last visit to England's Wizarding Conclave, from now on until her departure to the Elemental countries in a few weeks she would have to stay at home and in the muggle world.
'Fucking Ronald Weasley! I should have hightailed out of England as soon as it was confirmed that he had become Minister of Magic, but no I had to laugh myself silly on that day and continue my life as if nothing had happened. I really should have known that he wouldn't let this go,' Harriet thought ruefully while she looked at her whiskey glass.
She wasn't a drinker normally, but with all this shit happening she thought she deserved a glass. The burning liquid ran down her throat while she wistfully thought back to the time she was still considered a hero and not a dangerous public hazard that had to be reined in and used as a breeding machine.
After she had defeated Voldemort, the public outings and the masses crying out to her had been too much for the black haired witch; she had been grieving for all her fallen friends and had nearly drowned in her own depression until she had found solace in her deceased sister's greatest passion. Hermione had always loved Runes and after wallowing in guilt and sadness Harriet had wanted to feel somewhat closer to her and had picked up a Beginner's Rune Guide.
As it turned out, the black haired witch had an aptitude for it and so she had thrown herself into her studies with fervor while the wizarding world celebrated the end of the war. That traitorous bastard of a Weasel had enjoyed the attention and admiration a bit too much for her taste and had soon forgotten about their friends and even his own family who had sacrificed more than half of their members in the last battle.
Ron had turned into a somewhat well-known public figure after it became clear that Harriet wouldn't come to any of the celebrations, feasts and events held in her honor. The redhead had seized the opportunity and had secured himself a position in the ministry. Only a few weeks later he had started to work there without finishing his education while Harriet herself had continued her Rune studies, at first through self-study and later with some good private tutors.
The woman-who-conquered had passed her NEWT levels a year after the end of Voldemort and then had applied for a Rune Mastery, which had followed only three years later. During that time she had less and less contact with Ron, who had tried to drag her to a few ministry parties as his date. In the end she had reduced their letter correspondence to only quick notes for his birthday and Christmas. She couldn't believe what a ponce he had turned out to be.
So when his first marriage proposal via letter came, she had thought it was a joke, a poor one but definitely a joke after all she hadn't seen him in close to three years. Harriet had just inwardly shaken her head and torn the letter and ignored it until the next one sailed into her home only a week later with his reasoning for it. He wanted more power and with her as his trophy wife he would surely come out on top, at least that was what she could read between the lines. Unfortunately the scathing howler that she had sent him as an answer had only made him more persistent. In the end Harriet had put up some owl repelling wards and been done with it. She probably should have dealt with the problem in a different way than just ignore it. Because Ron had, after the first few months, done something devious, he had started to manipulate the public in his favor and against Harriet. The words, unstable, too powerful and turning dark had shown up more and more often in the articles of the Daily Prophet, until there were discontent and fearful whispers about her in every part of wizarding Britain. At that time Ron had stepped up and had publicly announced that he would marry her to keep an eye on her.
Harriet had speechlessly gaped at the audacity of the youngest Weasley. Needless to say the public was ecstatic and full of approval, Ron's stagnating career had sped up once more and suddenly he was candidate for minister. At that moment Harriet really, really should have fled Britain. In the space of two months after Ron had won the election he had changed the legal system so much that one was unable to leave Britain unless you had the approval of the ministry, furthermore he changed the marriage laws so that Harriet could be forced into one to keep her line intact, more than one pureblood witch was suddenly in a precarious position and was more or less married off to strangers.
At that moment some months ago she had finally understood the direness of her situation and had written a desperate plea for help to some of her Japanese Rune colleagues. If she wanted to escape Ron Weasley as completely as possible, she would have to leave Britain and even this world behind.
The reason for contacting her Japanese colleagues and not the ones in Europe, China, America or Australia was simple. The magic around Japan had always been slightly different than in the rest of the world. The reason for that was that the walls between dimensions were especially thin there. As a result Japan had some very interesting semi-permanent portals to other sister worlds of earth.
The Japanese wizarding folk had throughout the centuries explored the most stable one and had established relations in the so called Elemental countries. Harriet hoped that she could vanish into it and never ever have to deal with Ronald Weasley and the wizarding world again!
The head of the Japanese Rune guild had written her back nearly instantly and had some bittersweet news for her. She could become a member of the Elemental countries and with it receive the protection against Ronald Weasley and the British Wizarding Conclave that she so desperately needed, the only catch was that she would have to marry a native for that.
Harriet snorted, of course to escape one marriage she had to enter into another one; Fate seemed to be laughing at her once again. It had taken Harriet a week of nearly constant drunkenness to reluctantly agree to the offer. She told herself that under no circumstances she would allow Ronald Weasley the satisfaction of having her as wife. There was no way THAT was happening!
Mitzubi Kouji had assured her that they had sent out some of their best lawyers and that they would only accept the most advantageous proposal in her stead. In the meantime she had classes in Japanese. Surprisingly enough there was only a tiny difference in the pronunciation of the two languages. Additionally, she also had classes in manners and culture concerning the Elemental countries via magical mirror. Her tutor Nagawa-san was a strict thirty five year old woman from Mist who had married a wizard and followed him to Japan. She gave her a crash course in the do's and don'ts of her birthland as well as some tips concerning the local warrior classes, especially the ninjas. Furthermore her Japanese colleagues sent her all the books concerning the Elemental countries they could find.
What followed were months of waiting while the lawyers haggled over her marriage. They had negotiations open with Iwa, Kumo and Konoha. In the end the lawyers of the Nara clan in Konoha made the best offering and Mitzubi-san agreed in Harriet's stead.
And so the last Potter learned about her future husband some days after the confirmation via letter.
Nara Shikaku was with his forty three years only fifteen years older than Harriet. This fact alone relieved her immensely; in the wizarding world it sometimes happened that a seventeen year old would marry a seventy year old. From what Mitzubi-san wrote he was a distinguished war hero for his strategies in the last two ninja wars and the head of his clan. He had one son and heir, Shikamaru who was eighteen and also considered a war hero. The Nara clan was famous for their intelligence, laziness and medical knowledge and had a shadow manipulation bloodline. While Harriet still was somewhat apprehensive, quite a few of her fears had been alleviated through that. A clan that was famous for their intelligence and laziness would probably not feel the need to suppress her abilities or forbid her to use Runes and make her into the perfect housewife. The black haired witch enjoyed cooking for her few friends, be it magical or muggle and had no problem of doing it for her future husband and stepson, but she didn't want to be a typical barefoot and pregnant housewife who spent the rest of her life doing nothing else. This was also exactly the fate that she would have met if she had been forced to marry Ron.
In the next weeks Harriet began to seal all her belongings into scrolls, she had started to use those shortly after learning Kanji and Hiragana. The green eyed witch had found them a lot more practical for storing bigger things than the western storage Runes, wizards clearly weren't as practical as the culture she was now marrying into. She also put her house on the muggle real estate market, which she could do quite comfortably through the internet. The Potters had no wizarding properties left after the last three wars against Grindelwald and Voldemort and Grimmauld's place had been long since sold so there was one less headache for Harriet. In anticipation of her move to another dimension she also had slowly started to convert her fortune, be it galleons, muggle money or company shares into gold bars and precious stones, the only share she kept untouched was the one from WWW.
George who now lived in the states with Angelina and their kids was well aware of her plans to escape his brother's machinations. He had sent several howlers and other nasty surprises to his younger brother but nothing had made Ronald see reason. Harriet was thankful for the support she received from the surviving Weasley twin but also understood why he didn't visit his brother to force a confrontation.
George had never truly recovered from the death of his family, especially the one of his twin brother. So instead of being miserable in England he had moved with his new wife to America where he built up WWW into an international business with several chain stores around the world. He hadn't set foot on British soil for more than seven years and he would probably never return.
Not that he was the only Weasley to do that, both Charlie and Ginny had followed George's example and had left England sometime after the war. Charlie was pretty involved with the Dragon sanctuary in Romania while Ginny had turned into a globetrotter of sorts. No place held the wild red head's attention for long and sometimes Harriet didn't hear from the youngest Weasley up to a year, only to receive a book sized letter out of nowhere in which the red head gave a detailed account of all the interesting things she had seen. It also wasn't rare that Ginny's accounts of local culture and legends gave her a new inspiration for her own Rune work.
But back to the money situation, converting coins was easier and at the same time harder for Harriet than one would think. She was pretty thankful that she had moved all of her money out of Gringotts as soon as she had access to her family vault. While Harriet hadn't been banned from storing her gold at Gringotts, the betrayal of Griphook had made it very clear to the witch that the moment the goblins saw their chance they would betray her again. Furthermore she had this feeling that the next Goblin rebellion wasn't that far away as the wizard population liked to think.
In the time until her departure and while waiting for the results of the marriage negotiations, Harriet had used the few friends and acquaintances she had left in Britain. She had sent them to Gringotts whenever possible to convert a steady amount of galleons or muggle money into gold coins and bars or precious stones. With this slow conversion Harriet may have lost a percentage of her monetary wealth but it was a lot more discreet and didn't alert Gringotts or the ministry of her imminent departure.
To be honest it wouldn't have even bothered Harriet that much if she had to leave her fortune behind, the amount of money that her parents and godfather had left her was a very nice sum and made her wealthy but she could have lived even without it quite comfortably. Some years ago Harriet had published a few books concerning Runes under a Japanese nom de plume which raked in quite a bit of gold during the first few months of publishing and had been her most steady income since then. She had another two books finished since then but hadn't been able to publish them yet. Before she left for the Elementals she would hand them over to her Japanese publisher and give him instructions to convert her earnings into gold and precious stones and send it biannually to her new home, her WWW shares would collect interest in an account in the US in case she ever had to return to her birth dimension.
On the other hand it was also this fortune that allowed her such a rapid entrance into the Elemental countries. Apparently the war torn lands there desperately needed every penny to rebuild their homes and that fast. This desperation also allowed her lawyers to push through that only forty percent of her liquid monetary assets would go to the Nara clan as dowry, which frankly was a miracle in comparison to the European wizarding world where nothing less than eighty five percent was accepted.
In the days before Harriet's departure, her few magical and muggle friends visited her and wished her well in her new life. Harriet had with a heavy heart told her magical contacts that she wouldn't keep contact, at least not for the first five or so years after leaving. She wouldn't risk putting them into danger like that. She didn't even want to think about what Ronald would do if he found out that somebody had a way to contact her, due to this fear she also hadn't told them where she was going. Her muggle neighbors and acquaintances thought that she was moving to America and Harriet had mixed some forget me potion into the cookies she had distributed in the neighborhood; in a few days she would only be a distinct memory in their minds. She wasn't going to lie, it hurt to leave all those people behind knowing that she probably would never see them again but she steeled her heart, this was her life damn it, and no pompous Weasley was going to dictate it!
After closing up the house and vanishing the magical copy of the key Harriet breathed in deeply before she apparated slightly outside the proximity wards that ran along the coast. It would take a lot of power to break through the enchantments, shake off the interwoven tracking charms and apparate onto the other side of the channel. One last glance behind her at the land of her birth let Harriet smile; she really wouldn't miss the rain and cold weather.
'Fire country here I come!' was her last thought before she powered through the wards and set off the alarms throughout the ministry.
It took the responding squad only four minutes to arrive at the scene but by then Harriet had already reached her third apparition point and was powering up to jump through six more before she could land at the apparition point in Turkey where she would receive the illegal portkey to Japan. In the twenty minutes it took the British Wizards to confirm that it was Harriet Potter who had powered through the wards, said black haired witch had already arrived in Akita, where the main seat of the Japanese Rune guild was. Her colleagues and friends greeted her with smiles and congratulations before they showed her to a specifically warded guestroom.
Harriet would spend the next few days here while she finished the last of her personal business and prepared herself for her new life.