Disclaimer: The Harry Potter universe belongs to the proverbial Duchess of Magic, JK Rowling, Scholastic, Bloomsbury, Warner Bros and some other high falutin' companies. No matter how much I whine about not owning anything related to the HP universe, other than a few fanfic plots, I do not profess to own - and would never dream of making any money off - JKR's wonderful world... Damn it!
Chapter Fifty - Crapilogue
For the three Potters, they quickly resumed their studies in now their sixth year. The two wives were also now working hard on the Wizengamot, and Harry was happy for their company during those days when the three had to attend.
It was in late November when the human excrement struck with force the rotary oscillator. The book was released.
The publisher had originally asked, through their solicitor, for the right to release certain information contained within the book, as a sort of 'teaser'. But the three Potters were very adamant it not be.
That meant, when the book hit the shelves, it did it with all the usual fanfare in one hit. The publisher had also asked for Harry, at least, to be present for the book launch, held at Flourish and Blotts. But, again, the Potters refused.
While the publisher was trying for as much fanfare as possible, the Potters were aiming for as little as possible. The publisher believed the book would sell better if there was much publicity surrounding it, especially as Harry's name would be listed as one of the authors, while the Potters believed it was best not to make a big deal about it. They believed that too much publicity, too soon, might tempt the Minister to see to the book being pulled from the shelves. And that it would sell more books without interference from the Ministry on it's own merits.
Of course, the Potters received the so-called very first print off the binding 'machine'. Believing the book would end up being no more than about a half inch thick, including the hardcovers, they were almost shocked when they received the first copy and it turned out to be over an inch thick.
The reason why was quickly discovered when they turned to the inner pages. The font was actually quite large, and contained quite a few full page illustrations and photographs; as well as illustrations and photographs that were only part pages.
"You included pictures!" he exclaimed to his wives.
"Well, yes," said Hermione. "Not everyone who's a witch or wizard in magical Britain has been to Hogwarts, Harry; just almost everyone."
"We paid that little fanboy of yours, Colin Creevey, to take some photographs for us," explained Daphne. "And Hermione mentioned Dean Thomas was a talented drawing artist, so we paid him to draw some illustrations."
With a snort, Harry said, "I thought the drawings looked familiar. Dean's work, yeah? They're pretty good."
Two days after the book was released it was targeted with a scathing review in the Daily Prophet. Harry read it and laughed.
"You're not upset about it?" asked Daphne.
"Not at all," he replied with a grin. "It'll actually sell more books, as people will now go and buy it just to see why the critic was so scathing of it. We'll give it a few days and release a statement. That'll then have even more people buying it. By the time the Minister tries to act to 'ban' it, it'll be too late."
However, and a little surprisingly, the critic was responded to by people who had actually gone and bought the book and had the opposite opinion. If anything, many had written that they agreed with the Potters about the nature of souls, and thanked them quite profusely for clearing up the matter of the nature of soul bonds.
The critic ended up having to write a retraction for his comments and excused his reactions by stating he'd only 'skimmed' through the book at first glance. However, after a solid and more in depth reading, found he agreed.
That had Harry practically falling off his seat at the Ravenclaw table, cackling madly. His wives just smirked at his antics.
When Draco approached he smirked and asked, "Not satisfied with your current notoriety, cousin Harry? You needed to go and publish, too?"
"Blame Hermione and Madam Pomfrey, Draco," he replied. "Hermione had the idea to write a book about the soul bonds, and Madam Pomfrey encouraged her."
"Which reminds me," said Hermione. She pulled a new copy of the book out of her bag, together with a quill and ink. Opening the book to the bookplate page she wrote in it before she signed it with a flourish. Then slid it over in front of Harry.
Looking down, Harry read it and smirked before accepting the quill.
To our dearest friend, Madam Poppy Pomfrey, who encouraged us to write this book.
We ask you hold onto it and make it available to those who come after us, who also find themselves involved in a soul bond at an early age.
We hope it gives them peace.
Hermione J. Granger-Potter
Harry signed it below Hermione's signature and passed it on to Daphne; who, after reading the message, smiled and added her own signature before passing it back.
With it back in her hands, Hermione blew over the page to dry the ink before closing it with a snap.
Meanwhile, Draco had left again, shaking his head.
Hermione then almost casually strolled up to the head table and handed Madam Pomfrey the book, flipping the cover open to the dedication page as she did so.
From where they sat, Harry and Daphne watched Poppy look at the book with joy, before she closed it and held it to her chest with a look of great pleasure on her face.
After a few words between her and Hermione, Hermione turned back and headed back to their table with a wide smile on her face; clearly pleased with herself. Poppy showed the book and the dedication to the Professors either side of her.
"Nice!" commented Harry once she approached.
Sitting down, she said, "We probably would never have published it if it wasn't for her. I think it was the least we could do."
"With the next book, though," he asked, "Do me a favour?"
"What's that?" she asked.
"Make sure it clearly states, often, that what's written within is a matter of opinion," he urged. "Let them make their own assumptions, based on that."
"Alright, Harry; we can do that," said Daphne.
While sixth year was considered by most students as the year to relax between OWLs and NEWTs, Harry couldn't understand why. The assignments were still piled on them, even more so than for OWLs. But the three were able to slog through them in plenty of time before they were due.
While sitting down working on assignments together in almost silence, Harry had a sudden thought.
"I just thought of something," he grinned. "I wonder if Ron is enjoying his time at Azkaban, or would much prefer to be working on fifth year assignments."
Daphne gave a little snort while Hermione asked, "Why on Earth would you be wondering that?"
Shaking his head he replied, "No idea. One meal a day, if he's lucky. No second helpings, let alone thirds. No desserts. No chess. No Quidditch; even magazines... Heh!"
"He's gone," said Daphne. "Dumbledore's gone, Riddle's gone, Prewitt is as much as gone, and I've seen no sign nor hair of that little Weasley bitch. Forget about them.
"Yes, Ma'am!" he smirked. "Do you think you can come up with some way to help me take my mind off them?"
"Not tonight, tiger," she firmly replied. "Your timing's off."
"Oh," he softly said and sulked as both wives grinned back.
It was only six months later when the second book, the one on the truth about muggleborns 'Muggleborn or Squib-born?', was printed and released. It was much thinner than the first but the information within was just as, if not more, explosive.
Of course, the Prophet's critic immediately referred to Harry's little speech on the awarding of his second Order of Merlin, First Class. And asked, via his critique, just how far advanced the Unspeakables were in their own research.
The release of the book almost caused the calling of an emergency session of the Wizengamot but saner heads managed to prevail.
Of course, that didn't stop the questions flying thick and fast about how he - and his wives - had reached such conclusions. But, by the time the actual Wizengamot meeting was held, heads had cooled. It also helped that the goblins, in one of their rare media interviews, confirmed that they specifically kept an eye open for new muggleborns entering their bank; and, without specifically encouraging them to do so, tried to steer them towards taking inheritance tests. And why.
Someone was prepared for the meeting and attempted to pass legislation banning muggleborns from inheriting. Everyone waited for Harry or one of his wives to speak against. However, Hermione finally stood in support. And her closing remarks had them utterly flummoxed.
"And, finally, I support this legislation because it means it now becomes the responsibility of the Ministry to prove a muggleborn is, in fact, a muggleborn," she firmly stated. "It means the Ministry will now have the task of proving someone is not a squib-born; and is actually a muggleborn. No longer will the body of proof lie with the squib-born 'slash' muggleborn.
"This means all new magicals entering the magical world for the first time must be accorded the same rights as a pureblood, until such time as the Ministry deems them otherwise.
"As such, I adjure members to support this Bill with all their heart. Thank you."
Shockingly, the Bill actually passed. And it became the first piece of legislation that was ultimately aimed towards getting rid of the blood bigotry that ran rampant through magical Britain. And it wasn't the last.
As well as working on assignments and studying in school, the three of course also had their other Wizengamot duties. Harry, having already completed his first year without having to be part of any sub-body, was finally tasked with being a junior interrogator on minor cases. Because of his age, and it was felt he could better relate to the children, he was often called upon to sit on cases of minor child abuse.
Most of his cases, however, were of minor criminal matters. One such was a case of petty thievery in The Ministry v Mundungus Fletcher. Fletcher tried to explain how it was all a misunderstanding and how he didn't know he was actually stealing something.
However, Harry knew the truth about the man. He was an unrepentant thief, a con artist, a bald-faced liar, a coward and more. And Harry wasn't buying any of his pitiful excuses.
Harry asked pointed questions and wouldn't let the man weasel out of directly answering the questions he asked. When Fletcher attempted to pontificate, Harry immediately brought him back to point. Harry wasn't letting him slide.
Eventually, Fletcher was sentenced to five years in the low security wing of Azkaban but was told he'd only serve one year. And, that the remaining four years he'd be allowed out on a good behaviour bond. He was also told that, should he reoffend during that time, his existing remaining four years would be added to his next sentence and he would mandatorily serve them.
A heartbroken Fletcher was dragged away. The man knew his days of petty crime were over, because there was no way he wanted to serve those other four years of his sentence.
When Fletcher was released a year later, he attempted to emigrate a number of times to other countries, and was denied each time. Eventually, he was caught in France, having travelled there by muggle means by stowing away on the train that used the Channel Tunnel.
He fought the French aurors and was killed trying to avoid capture.
Because of the requirements of studying during their seventh year, the girls' turn at serving the Wizengamot in other means was delayed, and Harry received a 'stay' for the nine months.
For their seventh year, Harry was Head Boy while, for the first time ever, there were two Head Girls simultaneously; Daphne and Hermione. They served their roles with distinction.
They completed their studies with Outstandings at least in every subject. And, before they even received their marks, had their first jobs already organised. Harry, as expected, delved even deeper into politics and became a force to be both feared and awed by the other members of the Wizengamot. In time he was joined by Neville, Susan and a few other friends in an alliance of such strength that any law they moved was passed.
Hermione went into her private spell research and aided Daphne in developing new spells for Healing. Daphne eventually focussed on Healing as a career and became an emergency trauma specialist at Saint Mungo's.
Of course, Croaker was determined to have the three of them in his ranks so, after much coercion from the old man, the Potters eventually answered his call. However, instead of becoming full-time Unspeakables, the three of them became part-time specialists in the Department.
While all three became part of the legislative arm of the Department, Hermione continued to focus on spell research for them, Daphne became one of their Healers available for emergency call to work in the secret Unspeakable infirmary, and Harry occasionally - to the annoyance and fear of his wives - joined one of their combat teams. Hermione's Unspeakable name was 'Crafter', Daphne's was 'Patch' and Harry's was 'Mace'.
While the three did not tell anyone of their animagus forms, all three knew it was an unspoken fact that Croaker knew of them. Harry and he once engaged in a non-lethal 'training' duel because Harry cheekily called him 'Santa' in front of the entire combat arm of the Department.
In the rules of the duel Croaker had said, "I don't want to see you conjuring up any wolves, you hear me?"
Harry heard, loud and clear. And Croaker then, almost effortlessly, spanked him six ways from Sunday on the piste.
With Harry lying on the floor bound, frozen, and aching all over, Croaker said, "And that's what you get for calling me Santa!"
"You're right," said Harry. "I apologise. I got the letters in the wrong order. What I should have called you is Satan!"
Croaker just smirked and said, "I like that one much better."
When he walked off, not bothering to free Harry, one of Harry's team walked over and released him before helping him up. "Thanks, Spear," he muttered.
'Spear' just snickered and said, "That's why none of us mouth off to him. He visits you with pain."
The three, together with the Potter and Black alliances, finally forced the Wizengamot to publicly notify all Squib-borns they should consider visiting the goblins for an inheritance test. However, they would not be swayed on publicly stating why.
From that, the goblins found five who had come in and who had inheritances of some form.
One was still a student. And one, surprisingly, was discovered to be an illegitimate daughter of Rabastan Lestrange.
After talking to her, a young witch who was until then working as a waitress at a small café in the Alley, what she knew of her history was that her mother had fallen pregnant while as a single woman.
Her mother believed herself to be a virgin until she discovered she was pregnant. And swore blind she had no idea who the father was. The goblins and Harry determined her mother had been raped by Lestrange and her memories wiped of the event.
The goblins let him know it was not a rare occurrence for muggles to be raped by wizards, and for them to have their memories modified. However, usually, the memories were only modified to make the victim believe they were a willing partner; not erased of the act completely.
After a lot of discussion between her and Sirius, Sirius re-established the Lestrange line and set her a decent stipend and vault, but under the name of Donovan; her own. However, it took the forceful application of the alliances to force the Wizengamot to accept the name change as the Wizengamot wanted to see the name Lestrange re-established.
One of the others, a middle aged wizard, was the heir of the name Meadows, and the final one was an heir of MacKinnon.
The angels visited them only twice more. And that was to give them hints in which way they wanted them to go with their efforts. But, five years to the day after Harry finally rid the world of Voldemort, they turned up to tell them they'd no longer be visiting. The three had not just met their expectations, but exceeded them.
However, the three continued with their efforts to improve the lot of all magical persons and creatures in the magical world.
Harry went on to become Chief Warlock, but stepped down when Hermione became Minister, citing conflict of interest. He publicly gave the reason he just couldn't say no to her if she was determined about something. But, to their friends, he said he couldn't say no to her if he didn't want to end up sleeping on the couch.
The Potters ended up having six children with the first born to Hermione a year after she completed her studies. Daphne had her first after completing her training as a Master Healer, and the second only a year later. Then Hermione had twins, identical girls. And Daphne had her third two years later.
At that point both wives put a stop to being baby makers claiming they had no desire to challenge the Weasley family for the size of their brood. Harry had begged for more, claiming one more would give them a Potter-only Quidditch team. But, both wouldn't hear of it and refused.
Instead, they ended up adopting a child. A squib-born whose god-fearing parents, when they learned of their child being a magical, attempted to exorcise the 'demon' out of her, nearly killing her in the process.
Hermione used the spell she'd used on her parents in the original timeline to erase knowledge of the child out of the minds and homes of the child's parents and their fire and brimstone pastor. And the child, a lovely girl who suffered a lot of what Harry had gone through, grew with the desire to work with the Ministry to find others like her and her 'Dad' in the muggle world. And Harry finally had his Potter brood Quidditch team.
Twenty years after the fall of Riddle for the second time, the Potters gathered at Black Island with their extended family for the anniversary. Sirius came with his wife, Sophia, and their three children, Antares, Cassiopea and Orion. Remus turned up with his wife, Master Auror 'Call-Me-Tonks' Tonks and their two, Teddy and Regulus. Astoria and her husband, Draco, came with their two, Scorpius and Abraxas. And they were joined by Matthias and Deece, Ant and Cele, and an unmarried 'Wags'; who liked his nickname so much he preferred it to his true name.
While the entire family enjoyed a barbeque on the beach, Harry turned to his wives and asked, "Thinking back on everything, now; what would you change?"
"Nothing" replied Hermione.
"Absolutely nothing," smiled Daphne.
"Yeah," he said. "Me too."
A/N: Well, that finishes this one. I know I promised I'd have the next one ready by now; but, I did not foresee the sheer amount of work in delays my wife and I experienced moving home from Canberra back to Perth. Nor did I take into account just how long we were going to have to live in our motorhome, without a reliable Internet connection, during that time.
I will say, though, that I have quite a few story ideas being developed and written, but that it may be a while before I have at least one of them ready to publish. All I can say is, 'Watch this Space'. :)
Until next time, ciao!