Disclaimer – I solemnly swear that JKR owns everything Harry Potter. Whether or not I am up to no good with her characters is for you to decide.
Author's Note:This story, Potter Haven, follows Harry, Hermione and co's third year of magical education. Please note that Potter Haven follows on from their first year in The Cupboard Under the Stairs and their second year, chronicled in Hermione's Book Nook. I caution you that without having read the two previous stories, some of this story may not make sense. Also, there have been various plot points from the first two stories that have yet to be resolved / expounded upon. You may find that they are in either Potter Haven or in a subsequent year. Enjoy.
"I'm sorry, Hermione," that most cherished of voices whispered.
A light touch on her cheek registered and she brought her hand up, her fingers brushing along that spot. Slowly, her eyes flickered open and she frowned. He wasn't there, hovering over her like she'd imagined. The voice, the kiss, must have been nothing but a dream. Another one of those dreams, but one that felt infinitely more real.
Turning her head, Hermione Granger made out the frantic activity in the hall between Platforms Nine and Ten at King's Cross Station past the wisps of her bushy brown hair. People everywhere where rushing about. Many were slowly pushing themselves to their feet or helping others to stand. A couple of red-robed aurors seemed to be taking charge and herding everyone together.
Her brows knitted in concentration as she thought back to the last thing that she remembered.
She, her best friend Harry Potter, and their friends had not long arrived back at King's Cross from Hogwarts. They'd passed through the barrier where Harry had been pulled away to meet little Colin Creevey's family while she had gone on to find her own parents.
She remembered Harry joining the three of them and then he'd asked to speak to her privately. Whatever it was that Harry had wanted to say had him extremely nervous. He couldn't even look her in the eye at first and she'd wondered, no hoped, that he was finally going to ask her the question that she'd been ever so patiently waiting for for most of the year.
And then, just when it looked like he'd finally gathered up his courage, they'd been interrupted by Dumbledore. Two minutes! Just two more minutes! If he'd only given them that much time, then she would have known. Instead, the Headmaster had stood there, not allowing them the privacy and time that they needed.
And then everything seemed to go straight to hell.
Dumbledore had grabbed Harry and tried to drag him off behind a pillar to apparate the two of them to Harry's Aunt and Uncle's place. A place that Harry should never go and not just because of the way that they treated him. No, it was much worse than that. Nearly a year ago, Harry had inadvertently made a magical vow stating that he'd give up his magic if he spent another night at Privet Drive with his relatives.
Dumbledore knew that. But for some unfathomable reason, he'd chosen to ignore it.
Harry'd fought the Headmaster, but it was no use. She'd seen her dad start towards the struggling pair but before he'd reached them, Harry's magic had exploded.
Hermione remembered an intense flash of red light before she was blown backwards. Lifting herself up on her elbows, she could now see that she was over ten feet from where she'd last been. Whatever that was that Harry'd accidentally done, it was definitely powerful.
Her eyes widened as she saw a bunch of purple and gold robes lying at the base of a pillar. Dumbledore looked to be out cold.
"Hermione, darling, are you alright?" her mum asked, dropping to her knees beside her.
She nodded. "Where's Harry?"
Her father's eyes roved over her, obviously checking for any injuries before answering. "I'm not sure. I think I saw him run from the station, but in all the confusion, I'm not sure. Who was that man and what was he trying to do to Harry?"
"That was our Headmaster, Professor Dumbledore and he was trying to take Harry to his relatives," Hermione replied venomously.
Her mother's eyes narrowed. "Not back to those people who locked him in his room last summer?"
"Excuse me," a red-robed auror interrupted, "but I'm going to have to ask you to move over this way."
"Why?" her dad asked, standing up and using his height to look down on the younger man.
"We've got some healers on the way to check you over for injuries and we're interviewing everyone to find out what happened here," the auror replied.
"It's okay, dad, this man's an auror. They're like magical policemen," Hermione explained.
After a nod of consent, her dad reached down to help Hermione to her feet before the three of them started across the hall.
"What do you mean I have to stay here?" Cyrus Greengrass yelled. "Do you know who I am?"
To help give the baby-faced auror a chance to answer, Cyrus leld up his right hand, his Head of House ring clear to see on his index finger.
"My apologies, Lord Greengrass, but until we have the area secure, I must ask you to remain close to the barrier to Platform Nine and Three Quarters," the auror replied, an apologetic look on his face.
Cyrus glared hard before answering slowly to make sure that the buffoon in front of him understood.
"I witnessed the event and at the centre of it all was the Boy-Who-Lived being forcibly dragged away by the Chief Warlock. And while I'm not entirely sure what happened, House Greengrass owes a debt to that boy and we will honour it by looking after his interests in this matter. You have five minutes and then, if you want to try to keep me away from checking on Harry Potter, then you're going to have to stun me!"
He was pleased to see the auror's eyes widen before he scurried off.
"Daddy? What happened to Harry?" a clearly distraught Daphne asked.
"Excuse me, Madam Bones?"
Amelia Bones, Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, looked up from her parchment filled desk to see one of her on-duty aurors poking her head into her office.
"What is it, Janice," she asked
"The Big Board detected a major magical event less than five minutes ago," Janice announced.
Amelia dropped her quill as she began to get to feet.
"Where was it?" she asked.
"The muggle side of King's Cross Station," Janice answered, moving back from the door to allow her boss egress. "I've already sent a team there and I've alerted the Obliviators."
As Amelia strode from her office, she glanced at the clock.
"The Hogwart's Express should have arrived a quarter of an hour ago," she mused. "And at this time of day, King's Cross is going to be packed. How big was this magical event? Could it have been a simple case of accidental magic?"
Janice shrugged as she fell into step. "Could have been but it seemed too large to have been from a kid, Ma'am."
"In that case, alert another two squads," Amelia ordered. "I'll lead them myself."
"What are you doing to my dad?" Colin Creevey asked anxiously. "Why are you pointing your wand at him like that?"
The stern faced woman, Auror Hawthorne she'd introduced herself as, paused and her wand dipped. Her eyes switched focus until they were looking down at the small mousey-haired boy who'd just finished his first year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
"Are you magical?" she asked, her eyes narrowed.
"Yes," Colin nodded eagerly. "So's my brother but he won't start at Hogwarts until the year after next."
"I'm so sorry, Sir," Auror Hawthorne said, turning back to Colin's parents. "I wasn't aware that you were family of a magical."
Colin saw his dad give a rather shaky sort of nod.
"What were you going to do?" Colin asked.
"In order to keep the Statute of Secrecy, we'll need to obliviate any non-magical of what's happened here," Auror Hawthorne explained.
"Then may I suggest that you check to see whether they're family of a witch or wizard first?" Mister Creevey suggested.
"Of course. Once again, my apologies," Auror Hawthorne said before turning away to find someone else to harass.
"Excuse me Sir, my name is Tim Ferguson. I'm an auror with the Department of Magical Law Enforcement."
Dan Granger looked the man over. Like the rest of the aurors, he was wearing red wizard's robes, although these ones had a small gold band around the man's left sleeve. He also looked a lot more mature and experienced than the first auror that Dan had spoken to. Tim Ferguson looked to be slightly older than he was. His dark hair was greying around the temples and his short beard had more of a salt and pepper flavour to it than it once probably did.
"Yes?" Dan said.
"I understand that you were one of the closest to the event," Auror Ferguson said. "I was wondering if I could have your version of events for the official report."
"Of course, Officer, although, my daughter, Hermione, was almost standing right beside Harry when it happened," Dan explained.
"If I could have full names, please, that would help the report," Auror Ferguson asked.
"Of course," Dan replied, annoyed with himself that he hadn't already thought of that. "I'm Doctor Daniel Michael Granger. My daughter is Hermione Jane Granger, she goes to Hogwarts, just finished her second year there. And the Harry that I mentioned is Harry Potter. I'm sorry, but I don't know what his middle name is."
"The Harry Potter? The-Boy-Who-Lived?" Auror Ferguson confirmed.
"That's the one," Dan frowned. "I've heard my daughter say that he gets called that and that he hates it."
For a fraction of a second, Auror Ferguson looked abashed, before his job kicked in.
"If you could walk us through what you saw," he said, indicating that they should move over so that it could be re-enacted.
"Harry and Hermione had just gone over there to have a last talk before the holidays," Dan began, "before they were interrupted by that man."
Here Dan paused to point to the prone form of the man currently being tended to by a pair of witches.
"Chief Warlock Dumbledore," Auror Ferguson inserted.
"Chief Warlock? I thought his title was Headmaster?" Dan said, confused.
Auror Ferguson smiled. "Albus Dumbledore is a very important man. He holds both of those titles, plus a few others."
"How does he find time to run a school?" Dan wondered before shaking his head to get back to the topic at hand. "I couldn't hear what was being said, but there looked to be some sort of disagreement. My daughter said that the Headmaster wanted to take Harry back to those vile relatives of his and that Harry didn't want to go."
"Go on," Auror Ferguson said after jotting a few facts down on his parchment.
"That's when things looked to get a bit violent. Dumbledore grabbed Harry's arm and started to pull him towards that pillar. Harry was putting up a struggle and then the world went red and my wife and I were knocked over by some kind of backlash."
"Red, you say," Auror Ferguson confirmed. "Do you remember the source of it at all?"
Dan scrunched his face up in thought. "I'd have to say that it was Harry, but I'm not sure."
"Did you see what happened to the Chief Warlock?" Auror Ferguson asked.
"I'm pretty sure that he was sent flying by whatever it was that happened with Harry and struck that pillar," Dan replied.
"Did you notice at all what happened to Mister Potter?"
"Not really. I think he left the station pretty quickly afterwards, but I only caught a quick glimpse of him."
"Thank you, Mister Granger, you've been a big help," Auror Ferguson nodded. "Oh, one last thing. You said that your daughter and Mister Potter were friends. Do you think that she might have any idea where Mister Potter might have run off to?"
Dan shrugged. "You'd have to ask her."
"Report!" Amelia barked.
As the dozen aurors spilled out from the barrier to Platform Nine and Three Quarters from which they'd all just apparated from, Senior Auror Tim Ferguson strode over towards her.
"Ma'am," he nodded.
"What's the go, Tim?" she asked one of her more experienced field agents.
"At approximately twenty minutes past five, there was an altercation between Chief Warlock Dumblore and Harry Potter," he began.
Amelia closed her eyes and sighed. Harry. She should have known.
"It appears that Dumbledore was attempting to take Mister Potter to his relatives house when Mister Potter became agitated," Tim continued. "This resulted in a burst of accidental magic from Mister Potter. If I had to guess, I'd liken it to an overpowered stunner."
"How overpowered?" Amelia asked, sweeping her gaze across the hall.
Most of the people, both adults and students, were being interviewed on one side of the area. Occasionally, a person was escorted across to a grey-robed Obliviator. These were obviously the muggles having their memory of the event modified. On the far side of the hall, a pair of Healers were bent over a single prone body.
"Overpowered enough to send the Chief Warlock flying twenty feet through the air and to knock everyone over in a radius of forty feet."
Amelia whistled. "That's some accidental magic. I doubt that there's many wizards that could do that kind of spell with a wand. Was anyone injured?"
"Only the Chief Warlock," Tim replied, indicating the Healers.
"And where is Mister Potter now?" she asked.
"Unknown. He'd run before we even got here," Tim replied.
Amelia sighed. This was going to be a nightmare. Accidental magic or not, Harry'd broken the Statute of Secrecy, not to mention injuring one of the most powerful men in Great Britain. She sure hoped that he had a good reason, but simply the fact that he'd run didn't look good. The media, she knew, were going to be all over this, especially after Harry's hearing last September.
And then, as though she'd summoned them, a pair of reporters arrived. One was instantly recognisable: Rita Skeeter with her trademark jewelled spectacles and green quill. The other was somewhat decent for a reporter; at least, he more often than not actually reported the truth: Marcus Waynesbury.
"Madam Bones, how nice to see you," Rita purred. "We were wondering if you could give us a statement about what happened here today?"
"Come on, Mooney, Harry's probably been waiting for us for over half an hour."
"And whose fault is that?"
"Yours." Sirius shot back.
"Mine? How do you figure that?" Remus Lupin asked as they dashed across the road towards the entrance to King's Cross Station.
"Easy. You're the one who convinced me to become 'Lord Black' and take my seat on the Wizengamot," Sirius replied lightly.
Remus scowled at him. "Maybe so, but if you can get that werewolf law changed, it'll all be worth it."
"True," Sirius allowed, "although I don't think old Elphias had given that proposal much thought."
"It'll give you something to do over the holidays," Remus replied.
By now, the two men were rushing into King's Cross. The instant that they passed Platform Eight, their steps faltered and they looked grimly at each other.
"That was some pretty hefty muggle repelling ward," Remus remarked.
"Something's happened," Sirius remarked as he sped up once again.
As they entered the area, a fresh-faced auror stepped out in front of them, one hand raised to stop them.
"I'm sorry, Sirs, but you can't come past here."
Sirius barely even paused. Instead, he held up his Head of House ring and strode forth. The instant that he caught a glint of light from Amelia Bones' monocle, he altered direction. Currently she as in the middle of a press conference so the two men stopped just close enough to listen in.
"What was this 'altercation' about?" the male reporter asked.
"That information is currently unavailable to us," Amelia replied.
"Have you taken young Harry into custody for the grievous injury that he inflicted upon our illustrious Chief Warlock?" Rita Skeeter asked.
Sirius and Remus looked at each other in horror.
"No charges have yet been laid, Miss Skeeter and will not be until we have completed our inquiry," Amelia replied. "Now, if you will excuse me, I have a job to do."
As Amelia strode off towards the far side of the area, Sirius and Remus fell into step on either side of her.
"What's going on, Am?" Sirius asked.
"I'm still trying to work that out," she replied, without even bothering to glance at him.
"Want to give us the five knut version, then?" he asked.
By the time that Amelia had finished telling all that she knew, Remus was scowling at his fellow Marauder.
"This is what happens when you try to be too clever! Dumbledore should have been told that he wasn't Harry's guardian months ago!" he ranted.
"Alright, alright," Sirius relented, holding his hands up in surrender. "I should have listened to you."
"Do either of you have any idea where Harry could be?" Amelia asked.
"None," they replied simultaneously.
"That's going to make things more interesting," she commented, and then, after gaining the closest Healer's attention, she asked, "what's Dumbledore's condition?"
"He's had a very severe blow to the head," she replied. "We'll transport him back to St Mungo's where I suspect he'll be kept in a magically-induced coma for quite a number of days while we allow him time to recover. The brain can be quite a tricky thing, even for us magicals."
After taking her leave, Amelia led the two men towards one particular group of three people.
"Professor Lupin! Sirius!" Hermione cried "Do you know where Harry is?"
Sirius, Remus and Amelia all looked at each other.
"We were hoping that you'd know where he would have gone," Amelia replied.
"Do you think that he would have gone to Beth at the bookstore?" Remus asked.
Hermione shook her head, making her bushy hair fly around her face. "No, no, I don't think he'll be anywhere in the magical world.
"Why's that?" Sirius asked quickly.
Hermione cocked her head at him. "He told me what happened at his hearing."
Amelia swore under her breath. "He was told that if he did any more underage magic then he'd be expelled from Hogwarts, have his wand snapped and his magic bound."
"I think that I can understand why the boy ran if that's the penalty for something that you can't even control," Dan Granger stated flatly.
"If he's out in the muggle world, we may never find him," Remus said, wiping his face with his hands.
"Oh, Merlin, Harry, what have you done?" Sirius groaned.