Harry Potter and the Time Travellers
Summary: Stricken by a long war that had claimed too many lives, Harry, Ron, Hermione, Neville and Ginny time-travel back to the summer of 1992 to change the future and create a better world for everyone. H/G, R/Hr, N/L.
A/N: This story was originally thought of, created, written and posted by author JulesSC, a friend of mine. She has recently given me full permission to post the existing chapters, use her notes and post future chapters and finish this story. I'm working on future chapters but I thought I'd get a head start and post the first few chapters before that.
I DID, HOWEVER, CHANGE THE NAME OF THE STORY FROM "HARRY POTTER AND THE TIME MAGE" TO "HARRY POTTER AND THE TIME TRAVELLERS".
If there is anything you wish/don't wish to see happening with this story, please let me know and I'll consider them as I review Jules' notes. Thank you so much.
On a side note, please do read and review my own story, Harry Potter and the Incubus Inheritance.
Thank you very much for your time and patience.
There will be SIX CHARACTERS who will return from the future: Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger, Ginny Weasley, Neville Longbottom and an ORIGINAL FEMALE CHARACTER Parker James (who will not in any way resemble a Mary Sue or have any kind of romantic relationship with the other five who returned).
The six of them would've returned from the year 2015, in an alternate universe where the war had gone on even in 2015.
Harry, Ron and Neville were 35 years old in 2015. Ginny was 34. Parker and Hermione were 36. As such, they will have the mindset of mid-30s war veterans with nearly twenty years of experience, not immature school children.
Parker James is a thief, and is American. She's inspired by the character Parker from the amazing TV show Leverage.
This story will begin in the first week of August 1992; just a few days after Harry arrived in the original timeline via flying Fort Anglia. There are a few notable changes, besides the time-travelling veterans.
Harry Potter: He left to find the Horcruxes with Ron and Hermione in the summer of 1997 after Dumbledore's death. He and the others managed to find and destroy all of the Horcruxes – excluding the one inside of him – and returned to Hogwarts for the final battle. Harry killed Voldemort at last in the summer of 1998, a year after their trip begun. Unfortunately, the war didn't end there. Death Eaters revolted against forces of good and created their own revolution. Another Dark Lord named Zankou (taken from Charmed season 7; THIS IS NOT A CROSSOVER, ONLY THE NAME IS BORROWED) rose in 2001, just three years after Voldemort's fall. Zankou gained loyalty from the Death Eaters and riots and upheaval turned into war once more. Harry, Ron and Hermione left once more to go on the road. This time, their goal is to find allies and try to kill off Zankou's allies one by one. They were still on the road – and with fewer living allies by the day – in 2015, and Zankou was still going strong. Specialties: telepath (he is able to read, control and influence minds), magical combat (wand magic and wandless duel), foreign magic, transmutation.
Ron Weasley: He and Hermione got married in 1999, a year after Voldemort's defeat. Their wedding was the first happy moment their family had ever since Fred's death. Ron, along with Harry, were Aurors at this point, helping to try and reign in the Death Eaters with little to no luck. In 2001, Ron made another difficult decision and left with Harry, Hermione and Parker to fight darkness on the road. He received word that his family was under attack from Ginny, who used a two-way mirror to inform them in 2003. Ron, Harry, Hermione, Parker and Neville rushed to the Burrow and battled seven Death Eaters. Two were killed, two were captured and the other three escaped. The entire Weasley family except for Ginny and Ron survived. In 1998, Ron suggested to Harry and the Auror squad that they should implement physical fitness and combat into their regime instead of just relying on wand-work and magic alone. Not everyone in the Auror office agreed but Harry took it up with gusto, accompanying Ron to work outs and going to martial arts studios to learn. Ron took it up faster than Harry, absorbing everything like a sponge. In 2001, when they went on the road, Ron was the one who continued to train Harry. Throughout the years, Ron became the most skilled martial artist amongst the six, and the most athletic. Specialties: Muggle combat, superhuman strength, stamina and durability; ability to transform his entire body into a form of impenetrable steel that is resistant to great impacts, all muggle weapons and certain magical attacks (it should be noted that in this form, he is able to access his superhuman strength, his height is taller and his weight is doubled).
Hermione Granger: She never did manage to retrieve her parents from Australia or return their memories, first due to the unrest in Britain caused by the Death Eaters and then due to Zankou. Hermione is very skilled in rune magic and creates the protection they needed as they travel. Specialties: the ability to absorb knowledge like a sponge by simply touching a book, eidetic memory, casting out strong protective shields with the power of her mind.
Parker James: She was an American-born witch. She was a half-blood: her mother was a witch and her father was a muggle. Her mother died during childbirth and her father, who didn't know anything about magic, started his alcoholic downward spiral. Parker was 3 when she showed her first sign of magic and, shocked and panicked by this, her father left her on the steps of an orphanage. Just her luck, she was taken in just four months later by a family of witches and wizards – they lived in the same town the orphanage was located in and one of Parker's adoptive cousins worked part-time at the orphanage during the summer since there was no school. She and her adoptive family of powerful witches and wizards lived in Salem until 1986 when Voldemort and his Death Eaters tortured and massacred them all. Through sheer luck, 7 year old Parker escaped. She ran away and lived on the streets, learning to survive by becoming a thief – the best thief in the world. In 1996, after catching wind of Voldemort's return, Parker went to London. She tried searching for Voldemort himself, wanting revenge, and only managed to get into plenty of duels with Death Eaters using a wand she had stolen. In late 1997, she bumped into Harry, Ron and Hermione. Recognizing him by his scar, she allied herself with him. It was she who knew how to break into Gringotts, being a powerful thief, and they managed to steal Helga Hufflepuff's cup thanks to her. After the final battle, she stayed with the others though she disappeared from time to time to go on her "stealing spree". When the trio left to go on the road again, Parker went with them, adamant to help. In 2004, when Zankou grasped hold of Gringotts, Parker's abilities were used as she helped steal money, goods and provisions – the only stipulation Harry gave was that she could only steal from the bad guys. Parker was unimpressed but liked it a lot better when Hermione tracked down some pirates for her to steal from, getting them larger amounts of cash and valuables. Parker, who hadn't ever attended a magic school or gotten her own wand, was quite skilled at wandless magic. She was able to focus her magic a lot better after she stole a wand from an unnamed Death Eater when she was 15. After the final battle, Harry took her to see Ollivander to get her a wand of her own as a thank you present. She was most fascinated with the art of becoming an Animagus and between 1998 and 2000, she successfully managed it: her animagus form is a jaguar. In addition to being a thief, Parker was also quite adept at making weapons. It had started out as muggle weapons when she was 8 – to help her stay safe on the streets – but she eventually began making magical weapons. One of her pride and joys is a weapon called an "energy whip" which essentially uses energy from the atmosphere, turning it into a deadly whip that, when wrapped around someone, could burn and sear their flesh. Specialties: Agility; ability to be a great thief, moving in an out without being seen; ability to take the potential energy stored in an object and turning it into kinetic energy, charging the object with enough power with explosive results; superhuman physical abilities such as agility, dexterity, endurance, speed, reflexes and reactions, flexibility, coordination and balance; 'phasing' or intangibility which allows her to phase through solid matter without harm.
Ginny Weasley: There was an attack at the Burrow in 2003. Harry, Ron and Hermione returned just in time to save only one other Weasley: Ginny. With the rest of her family dead, Ginny left with the trio to help them in their quest to destroy Zankou and his cronies. Harry and Ginny were married in 2006 in a private ceremony attended by their four friends on the road. They married in a beautiful clearing in a forest somewhere in France. Despite how glum their future looked, Ginny could only hope for the best. In 2015, one of the reasons she wanted to go back and do-over (besides saving her family) was because she wanted a chance to end the war earlier and be able to have a normal married life with Harry; she desperately wanted a child though she knew it was impossible while they were on the road, fighting Death Eaters at every corner. Specialties: Spellcrafter, portal creation (the ability to create wormholes/portals for transport between two locations), Firestarter (the ability to create and control fire with one's own mind).
Neville Longbottom: Neville and Luna fell in love in 1999 and were married a year later despite the upset in the Wizarding world caused by the Death Eaters. They had a beautiful ceremony in the gardens at Longbottom Manor, attended by a hundred of close family and friends. Neville and Luna stayed behind in 2001, fighting the battle at home while Harry, Ron, Hermione and Parker went off fighting on the road. Neville's grandmother was killed in 2002 for not wanting to ally herself with Zankou. A week later, the Lovegoods' house went up in flames, killing Xeno and Luna who was visiting. Mourning the loss of the woman who raised him and the woman he was in love with, Neville left to search for the four travellers. He met up with them six months later in Albania and joined them in their slow battle to destroy Zankou and the Death Eaters. Specialties: healer, potions master, plant manipulation (the ability to control, manipulate or animate plant life).
Just like this isn't a crossover with Charmed (despite the use of demons, the Underworld and the name "Zankou"), this also isn't a crossover with X Men or anything else. Some of the "special powers" that the six core characters of this story have are taken from X Men, however, or inspired by them at least. Harry's telepathy ability (reading minds, controlling them, etc.) is taken from Professor X, for example. Ron's steel form and his superhuman strength/reflexes as well as Parker's intangibility is taken from and her ability to turn potential energy into kinetic energy are also X-Men-inspired. The other three have powers that aren't taken from X Men, but they're easy enough to understand – Ginny can start and control fire with her mind, Neville can animate, manipulate and control plant life with his mind, and Hermione can understand all languages just by hearing or reading it, and she absorbs information just by touching a certain book or object (if she touches a book, all she has to do is concentrate and every information in that book will be transferred to her mind).
Chapter 1: The Time-Travellers
Washington State, USA
The dark forest seemed even more ominous at night. There wasn't a single animal in sight – no owls, no deer peeking around any trees and – thankfully – no mountain lions looking for an easy kill. A cold breeze blew periodically, ruffling the leaves on the trees and on the ground. It gave the impression of people walking, drawing nearer. It was enough to make anyone on edge.
Five figures stood in a runic circle, spread out evenly on the red circle painted on the ground.
"Are you sure this is going to work?" Ron asked nervously as his eyes followed Hermione as she walked around them, muttering protection spells around the runic circle.
"It has to," Harry answered for her, his voice as solemn as his expression.
Ron didn't seem all that convinced. Out of the six of them, he was the only one who wasn't a hundred percent on board. He wasn't so sure they could pull off something of this magnitude, even with Hermione on their side.
"But what if things go from bad to worse?" he wondered, not for the first time.
Neville glowered at a spot on the ground. He had never recovered from losing his grandmother and his wife, all in the span of one week thirteen years ago. They had received word of St. Mungo's being burned to a crisp and destroying everything and everyone in it – including Neville's parents who were in-house patients there – not seven years ago. Neville's only remaining relatives – his Great Uncle Algie and his wife – had perished in a Death Eater attack three years ago. Each one of these events had turned him darker and darker and now there was nothing left in him but hatred for evil and the burning need for revenge.
"It's already worse," he spat out. "What else is there to lose?"
Ron was going to point out that he could lose his wife and his sister. They could all lose each other. They could die.
But Harry reached out and grasped his arm, subtly shaking his head.
Neville was right anyway.
They had been on the road for fourteen years, fighting off Death Eaters and vampires and werewolves and giants...Zankou had only gotten stronger and stronger. And ever since he had opened the gateway to Hell and released demons from the Underworld onto earth...It had been a pointless battle; one they couldn't win.
They needed more time and the only way they could get it was by going back to the past.
Even if it meant having to re-do it all over again.
Even if it meant Voldemort would still be alive.
Eighteen years ago, Harry would've never thought anything could be worse than Voldemort and his abominable existence. Of course, then he had been a very naive seventeen year old who had no idea that greater evil existed.
Ginny, standing on the other side of Harry, grasped Harry's hand tightly. "Think of everything we could gain, Ron," she said, her voice shaking at the mere thought of what they were about to do. She was terrified and exhilarated at the same time; she didn't want to have too much hope only to have it destroyed later. "We could see our family again."
"Yeah, or we could die," Ron muttered under his breath. Then again, that's also another way to see them again, he thought. It was only the thought of any harm coming to his wife, his sister and their little makeshift family of warriors that made him pause.
Suddenly, something dropped from one of the high branches of the tree behind Ron and Neville, right down to the centre of the circle. It startled the other five so badly that they were all reaching for their wands.
Then, of course, they remembered that their wands weren't with them but tucked safely away in Hermione's beaded purse with the extension charm on it.
On second thought, it probably wasn't a good idea to be without our wands, Harry thought anxiously, feeling naked without it even if he had mastered wandless magic ages ago. Force of habit, he supposed.
They needn't have worried, however.
The woman who had so gracefully taken a fifteen foot drop without breaking a single sweat had sunny blonde hair, and her eyes were a startling deep icy blue colour. Her skin was a pale ivory, a stark contrast against the all-black ensemble she wore, and – just like her hair – stood out like a beacon of light in the dark forest night.
Her words sent a shiver down their spine.
They tensed for a second before they sprang into action.
"Parker, get in position," Harry whispered harshly, and the woman slipped in between him and Ron, standing just inside the red painted runic circle on the forest floor.
Ron switched between turning his head this way and that, trying to spot the incoming danger, and keeping his eye on his wife, still making her rounds around the circle, whispering protection spells hurriedly under her breath.
"Hermione," he whispered urgently.
She ignored him, speaking speedily in Old Latin as she moved, her wrist flicking her wand this way and that.
"Hermione, come on!" Ron moaned, cold sweat breaking out over his forehead and his heart racing wildly.
Harry, catching sight of the first dark robed Death Eater, frowned heavily. Next to him, Ron took on his steel form – the form he always took when he was anticipating battle. It was his defensive mode, one that he took almost unthinkingly ever since he had been able to do it for the first time just a little over ten years ago.
"Hermione, get in!" Harry yelled, raising his hand and throwing a quick cutting curse at a Death Eater who was a little too close to Hermione, his wand pointed at her and his mouth opened to curse her.
Ron growled in anger and moved to step out of the runic circle to attack the Death Eaters but Neville yelled out, "Stop! We can't move out of this circle!"
Neville had flung his arm out in front of Ron as though to stop him but in his battle form, Ron had unmatched superhuman strength; he could've snapped Neville's arm with his pinkie finger. However, Ron thankfully retained his human thoughts and feelings in this form even if he followed more baser instincts most of the time. He refrained from hurting Neville, his friend, and turned to look at Hermione.
"Hermione!" he called out, his voice deeper than usual, and growled. "Come on!"
Harry saw another Death Eater moving to strike. His hand to his temple, Harry accessed his telepathic ability. The Death Eater in question had not a single shred of Occlumency in him, which made it all the more easier for Harry to tap into his mind.
Stop, Harry willed the Death Eater. The Death Eater's hand froze in mid-air, his wand hanging limply from his fingers and his mouth parted slightly as though he had been hit with a temporal statis spell.
Attack your allies. Forget your enemies, Harry instructed, sending the thought from his mind straight to the mind of the unnamed Death Eater.
Immediately, as though confounded, the Death Eater spun on his heels, pointed his wand at his fellow Death Eaters and started firing curses left and right.
Confusion turned into fury when they realized one of their own was attacking them. Assuming he was turning his back on them, the Death Eaters turned their attention from the six second-generation Marauders to their former ally.
One of the Death Eaters, obviously a werewolf, moved to strike the attacking Death Eater physically but the Death Eater was quicker – with a quick swish of his wand and a loud yell, the werewolf fell to the ground in a crumpled heap, instantly dead.
Amidst the insanity of the brawl the Death Eaters had found themselves in, one single Death Eater had scrambled away. His dark eyes zeroed in on Hermione, standing just outside the protective runic circle. A beastly smile spread across his lips.
Hermione finished the last protection spell just in time as the first curse blew past her ear. She ducked out of the way then threw a disarming spell at her attacker over her shoulder, followed closely by reducto to throw him back several feet.
The Death Eater, enraged, let out a strong yell of anger. He snatched his wand back up from the ground and pointed it at Hermione, shouting, "Avada Kedavra!"
Ginny screamed in terror but Hermione had already leapt inside the circle, and the protection wards had gone up.
The killing curse merely rebounded off the protective wards. The Death Eater that had casted it leapt aside, out of its way. It hit the Death Eater that Harry had used his telepathic mind control power on, killing him just as he was about to deliver another killing curse at his third ally.
Without the "traitor" to distract them, all of the remaining Death Eaters turned to focus their attention back at the Marauders.
However, now the Death Eaters couldn't see any of them; the runic circle had been hidden by a Fidelus charm with Harry as Secret Keeper – they didn't want Zankou or any of his followers to see the rune, figure out what they were doing and take a time travel trip back to the past to wreak havoc on a world that wouldn't be ready for it.
Angered, they began throwing curses left and right but they only rebounded off of the shielding ward that Hermione had put up.
They were safe – but Hermione wasn't fool enough to think the wards would last forever.
Hastily, she tucked her wand back inside her beaded bag – everything they had, all six of them, had been placed inside the bag in case they'd need it in the past. After all, survival equipment could never steer you wrong.
She grabbed the ancient tome off the ground, just as a green curse hit the shield. It rebounded, of course, and each one of them was thankful that Hermione was so good with runes and protection wards.
Hermione began to read, the words a mix of Old Latin and Sanskrit that only she could comprehend.
The wind began to pick up around the runic circle, startling the Death Eaters. They stopped firing curses and hexes, looking around them instead as they gripped their wands nervously, waiting for some unnamed threat to come bursting forth.
In the runic circle, Harry, Ginny, Parker, Ron and Neville were looking around them nervously. The wind, crackling with magical energy, went straight past the ward barriers, unaffected one bit.
Hermione was the only one not paying it any mind, her eyes and her mind focused solely on the book in her hands and the complex spell she was chanting – the spell, with the accompanying ritual they had performed just minutes earlier, that had taken them a year and a half to find, and eight months to prepare for.
As she reached the final verse of the spell, the wind picked up once more, turning into a full storm. Their hair whipped around them and their jackets and coats flapped about. The wind sped so fast that they couldn't see past the grey coloured air. Fog appeared out of nowhere, enveloping the six of them, growing thicker and darker until they couldn't even see their hands. Hermione had to shout to be overheard over the noise of the wind.
Finally, as she uttered the last word of the incantation, a blinding white light emerged from the fog. It grew so bright that they had to squeeze their eyes shut.
The Death Eaters, who couldn't see the wind swirling around in the runic circle or the fog, could suddenly spot a blinding white flash of light in the middle of the clearing they were in. They turned their heads away and shielded their eyes.
As the light enveloped the six of them, the fog seemed to disappear, receding away from them as though they were Dementors being chased away by an incredibly powerful Patronus. The light was warm and too bright, even against their closed eyelids.
And then...They were no more.
The Death Eaters, feeling the light growing dimmer, bravely looked back towards the middle of the clearing. The light had all but extinguished. Having not seen the fog before, they were taken completely off guard when the dark mist exploded in a circle, the excess energy from such a powerful ritual and incantation expunging itself out into the atmosphere. The Death Eaters yelled out in shock and pain as they were thrown back by the powerful mist.
Meanwhile, Harry, Ron, Hermione, Ginny, Neville and Parker had found themselves free-falling down. They had no idea where they were or what they were falling down to. All around them, there was absolutely nothing at all, nothing but pure, blinding whiteness.
It must have been hours as they fell, or that was how it felt like, before Harry spotted a spot of black and grey somewhere in the distance below. The spot grew bigger and bigger until he could finally make out what it was.
He was shocked to discover it was a large moving picture – almost like a Wizarding portrait – of the six of them just moments before, when the Death Eaters had surrounded them and Hermione had been reading the incantation.
They passed another moving picture after that – it was of Parker climbing the tree effortlessly, telling the others she would keep a look out while Hermione protected the runic circle. The next one was of the six of them performing the ritual that had to accompany the incantation Hermione had read. The next one was of the six of them arriving at the forest, trekking to the particular spot where the magical energy converged powerfully enough for the ritual and spell to work.
The moving pictures kept coming, faster and faster, but Harry caught what most of them were before they blurred out of sight.
The six of them fighting Death Eaters, Hermione and Parker finding the ingredients needed to do the ritual, the six of them scouring all over God's creation for the heavy, ancient tome that contained the necessary ritual and incantation for them to travel back, the many towns and villages they'd hidden in, the never-ending battles, Harry and Ginny's wedding, the attack at the Burrow, Neville finding them, the decision to travel the road as they brought the fight to the Death Eaters, the rise of Zankou, Neville and Luna's wedding, the rebellion of the Death Eaters after Voldemort's downfall, Ron and Hermione's wedding, the battle of Hogwarts, the road trip to find Horcruxes, the first time they had ever met conniving thief Parker...
They were literally falling back in time, the moving pictures on either side of them showing them how far back they were going.
...Bill and Fleur's wedding...
...Finding out about Horcruxes, and how Harry himself was one...
...The Department of Mysteries...
...That horrid toad Dolores Umbridge...
...Dumbledore alienating Harry to protect him...
We're almost there, Harry thought, zooming past moving pictures of Cedric and the Tri-Wizard Tournament.
"Remember!" Hermione shouted over the noise of the wind rattling around them as they fell, speeding past a moving memory of Sirius and his escape with Buckbeak. "When we reach the correct time, try to move so that you'll land on your feet! Just like a Portkey!"
Harry grimaced – both because they'd just passed a memory of Lockhart and his God-awful phony smile, and because he hated Portkeys.
"There! I see it!" Ginny shouted, pointing below them.
Sure enough, down below, lying down horizontally unlike the vertical pictures the others had been, there was a moving image of the memory of the Burrow – as intact as it had been twenty-three years ago. A much younger Ron and Harry were laughing together as they flew in slow circles around one another. Fred – or George, as no one could really tell – was flying Harry's Nimbus and the two friends were using the Comets the Weasleys owned.
Harry remembered that day.
It had just been a few days after his arrival at the Burrow the summer before his second year at Hogwarts. Ron, Fred and George had come to rescue him in their father's flying car and he was staying with the Weasleys for the last month of summer vacation.
He was surprised to see a familiar bushy-haired girl coming into sight in the memory; she sat with Ginny in the field, surrounded by tall grass, as Ginny occasionally looked up at her flying brothers with a scowl on her lips. Hermione, a book in her lap, was saying something to Ginny though none of them could hear what.
He didn't remember Hermione being there the first time but Harry didn't have time to marvel over the change. They were approaching the memory, going faster and faster, and Hermione was yelling at them to pull themselves upright so that when they fell into the memory, they would do so standing up and without any risks of hurting themselves after such a long fall.
Harry pulled himself up with some difficulty, feeling himself struggle against the heavy wind. It was rather like how he felt in mid-air during a Quidditch game whenever he pulled a Wronski Feint.
He felt a shudder go through him as his feet touched the memory, and his entire body dipped into it. He could feel the others around him, and looked around at them just as his feet his solid ground.
Ron and Ginny were on either side of him, and Neville, Hermione and Parker were behind them. However, they were no longer solid entities but see-through, completely transparent beings...It was as though they were ghosts.
Harry blinked, surprised, when Neville and Parker blurred and vanished as they walked forward with the rest of them. The wind, picking up the same way it had back at the forest though not as severe as it had been then, seemed to have blown them away into nothingness.
He panicked for a moment before remembering what Hermione had said about their future selves being automatically pulled to their past bodies so that they could merge as one.
Parker's probably all the way back in America now, Harry mused, thinking back to her promise of coming straight to the UK once she had merged to find the others and start their quest to end the war with Zankou before it ever began.
By this time, Hermione and Ginny – their younger counterparts, of course – had spotted the four ghostly beings moving slowly but steadily forward.
They both sprung to their feet.
Hermione screamed, alerting the boys overhead and they immediately flew down to the ground, all traces of laughter gone as they drew out their wands. Harry noted in the back of his mind that there were more red-heads around than the first time, as well: Bill and Charlie, Ron's eldest brothers whom he hadn't met at age twelve in the original timeline, were both there, brooms abandoned at their feet from the Quidditch game they were playing and wands out pointed at the four "ghosts".
Ginny yelled for her parents and Mr. Weasley, Mrs. Weasley and Percy all came running out of the house, wondering what the panicked shout was about.
Harry locked eyes with his younger counterpart. He couldn't remember being that scrawny or innocent-looking and he winced at the thought of having to build up all his muscles and stamina all over again.
It was strange the things he thought of at a time like this.
He drew closer to the young boy, and he could see out of the corner of his eye Ron reaching his younger counterpart as well.
A red blast that could only have been a stunner was fired from Charlie's wand but the curse went right through the older Ron, not having a single effect on him as though he really was a ghost. This only seemed to make everyone more on edge.
Mrs. Weasley ran forward and tugged Ginny behind her, shielding both Ginny and Hermione and glaring at the "ghosts" moving closer. They all looked familiar...And she gasped as she realized why.
They looked like the four youngest kids in the group...Only, they were older. Much older; it was as though they were in their thirties. The raven-haired man and the ginger-haired boy – obviously older, transparent versions of Harry and Ron – were broad and muscular, Ron more so than Harry. They had a few visible pearly scars across their silver faces, and she was sure Ron had a piercing in his ear, similar to the one Bill had.
What was going on? Molly wondered, panicking.
Harry reached his younger self and stopped right in front of him, nothing but an inch of space between them. Younger-Harry gaped at him, obviously having seen the resemblance between them, and his wand had drooped. Younger-Ron was doing the same thing with his counterpart.
"Don't worry," Harry told his past self. "It'll all be alright."
Remembering Hermione's instructions, Harry grasped the thin, bony shoulders of his younger self, took a deep breath and stepped forward so that his body floated through younger-Harry.
For a moment, nothing happened except for younger-Harry shivering.
Then, Harry's vision went blank as a hot, white pain seared through him. He fell to his knees, screaming in pain.
It was worse than when Voldemort had touched his scar in the graveyard, worse because he could feel it in every nerve-ending in his body, and worse because it felt like he was reliving all the pain of his past – all the deaths of his loved ones, the torture given to him by Voldemort, by the Death Eaters, by Zankou and by evil forces who had allied with him. His scars burned as though he had just gotten them, and his skin seared with pain. His blood boiled and he felt like tearing his face off with his hands.
Except...His hands were stuck on either side of him, too heavy for him to move. His back arched as he felt unbearable stinging, needle-like pain go through his spine.
He thought he could hear other screams – screams of pain, screams of terror and screams of panic – but he couldn't hear a single word over the buzzing in his own ears.
His mind, having gone as blank as his vision, suddenly flickered as though someone had turned an old telly on.
Static gave way to memories.
At first, memories of the past year with Quirrell and the Stone, of his decrepit life with the Dursleys and his rescue by Hagrid, were the clearest in his mind. He could taste it at the very tip of his tongue.
Then, another static-filled moment later, these memories seemed so old, as though they were a lifetime away. He supposed they were.
Memories of his next five years of school after that came to mind, even if he hadn't gone through them in this timeline. Next came the Horcrux-hunt. Then Voldemort's downfall. The Death Eater rebellion. Zankou. Their lives on the road.
Every single one of those memories was clearer, much more startlingly vivid, than the Dursleys or the Hut-on-the-Rock or Quirrell's pathetic attempt at getting the Stone.
As suddenly as the pain came, it receded, leaving Harry with his most recent memory at the forefront of his mind: the ritual in the forest, followed by their freefall back in time.
His vision started to come back to him, and he gasped, hunching forward so that his clenched fists hit the grassy ground. It had been described as a painful, almost impossibly dangerous journey, but he hadn't expected it to be worse than the Cruciatus curse.
He panted, feeling his forehead and hair drip with sweat, and his shirt soaked through. Once his heart rate had slowed slightly, he turned his head to his right. He saw Charlie kneeling beside him, worry, panic and fear on his face as he braced Harry.
Ron was in a similar position on the ground, Mr. Weasley and Bill on either side of him. It took a few moments but Ron finally turned his head. Sweat dripping from his nose onto the ground, Ron managed a weak, triumphant grin. Harry returned it, exhilaration at their impossible success fuelling his energy for a moment.
"Harry," he could hear Charlie's panicked voice and looked up at the fearful red-head. "Harry, you okay?"
"Yeah," Harry panted out, grunting as he tried to stand up on his shaky legs. Charlie helped him up, keeping a hold on him just in case he couldn't stand on his own. "I'm fine."
Ron followed suit, almost stumbling back down on the ground. The loss of his impressive muscles had put him off-balance and he vowed to train himself and the rest of their group up as soon as he could – their physical prowess had ensured their survival more than once, after all.
Harry and Ron spun around, perhaps a little too quickly on such unsteady legs, as they heard distinctly feminine screams. Harry almost toppled back but Charlie grabbed him and kept him upright.
Hermione had already finished the merging, sitting up on the ground and looking pale and shaky, but Ginny was still clearly in the middle of it, screaming her lungs out and thrashing on the ground as she laid on her back.
Harry, getting a burst of energy from seeing his wife in so much pain, pushed away from Charlie. "Ginny!" he yelled, scrambling forward and falling onto his knees next to Ginny.
"Ginny," he took hold of her shoulders, startling Mr. and Mrs. Weasley who were trying to keep her calm and rouse her from her painful "sleep". "Ginny, don't fight it," he advised her, remembering Hermione's advice before they'd started the ritual. "Just give into it...Ginny, it's going to be alright. We're all here. We're safe. I know it hurts, just...Let go."
Ron had come to kneel by Hermione's side and they clutched at each other as they stared at Ginny, worry etched on their faces.
I can't lose her, Harry thought desperately, knowing that not everyone who tried the dangerous spell came out of it alive. It was the reason why no one had tried to in nearly eight hundred years. It was the reason why so much time had passed that people had forgotten such a thing existed. She's strong. She has to make it. I can't go through this without her. She can't be the only one who...
"Ginny!" Harry cried out, his voice cracking.
Hermione let out a sob and turned her head away, pressing it into Ron's chest. Ron looked on grimly, unable to do anything but hold onto his wife.
Mrs. Weasley was unsure of what to make of all of this. Harry – as sweet of a boy as he was – had never really paid any mind to her little girl. It wasn't to say he was rude or arrogant, heavens no. He was sweet and polite to her, kind and friendly, but as most twelve year old boys go, he was more interested in having adventures with his best mate and playing Quidditch. He wasn't interested in any girl.
So she was shocked when – after that strange display involving the "ghosts" of people that somewhat resembled her son, her daughter and their two friends, and the horrifying minutes when the four of them had writhed on the ground, so overcome with pain that they could do nothing but scream – Harry had run to Ginny, held her with a tenderness that he couldn't hide despite his panic, and had started talking to her about things that made no sense to her whatsoever.
"Arthur, dear," Molly turned breathlessly to her husband. "We need to get her to the hospital. Quickly –"
"No!" Harry yelled, interrupting her and her head spun around to face the boy once more, shocked. "No," he said again, his voice quieter. "She can do this. I know she can."
Molly and Arthur shared a glance, unsure what to do. They had never seen him like that before. Then again, they'd only really known him for four days. He seemed a bit...Unstable at the moment.
"Harry, dear..." Molly began, trying to pacify him so they could get their daughter and make their way to St. Mungo's.
To Molly's surprise, Ron spoke up. "Mum," he said, his voice hoarse and grim. "Don't. I know it seems strange but we'll explain once Ginny wakes."
"What on earth do you mean by that!?" Molly's voice rose to a yell. Her fear was making her blood boil and she took out her anger on her son. "This is ludicrous! We need to get her-"
"Mum," Ron pleaded, his eyes appearing almost sunken as he looked at her. It made her tongue tie.
Her youngest son looked like his soul had aged fifty years in the space of the last ten minutes. She remembered the lively, sparkling eyes he'd had just that morning as he discussed Quidditch with his brothers, regaling tales of a game he'd gone to with his brothers and father to his best friend, and now...None of it was there. Instead, there was wisdom, pain, darkness that she couldn't understand.
It didn't belong on a twelve year old boy.
Her attention was brought back to her daughter when she gave another pained yell. Bill stepped forward, Charlie and the twins flanking him, ready to pull the seemingly unstable boy away from their sister and getting her to the help she needs, when Ginny's body began to slow its thrashing about. Her body, stiff as she's seized up earlier, began to slowly relax, her muscles no longer tensed. Her breathing grew steadier and steadier until her eyes finally flew open.
Ginny coughed a few times, turning her head to the side to shield her eyes from the blazing sun directly above her. Her eyes found Harry who was cradling her and she sat up immediately, giving herself a head rush.
"Harry," she whispered, her eyes filling with tears at the fresh memory of the pain. She launched herself at him, hugging him tightly around the neck and pressing her lips firmly against his.
"Whoa!" Bill yelled, eyes widening in shock at Ginny's actions.
"Whoa," Charlie agreed when Harry – instead of pushing her away and being embarrassed – pulled her closer until she was practically sitting on his lap, his fingers tangling in her red hair as he kissed her back with vigour.
"Ginevra Molly Weasley!" Molly shouted, flustered and scandalised. She was partially glad that Ginny wouldn't get her heart broken from her crush but the two were far too young for such displays of passion. For heaven's sake, they were only eleven and twelve years old!
Ginny and Harry pulled apart, chests heaving and faces tomato red. Hermione giggled and Ron made a mental note to only kiss Hermione when no one else was around as he smirked at his sister and his best friend.
Ginny turned her head towards her mother and was overcome with emotion yet again. This was the first time she had seen her parents alive in twelve years. The last time she had seen them, they had been dead and bloody, their bodies broken and burning as the Burrow went up in flames. They hadn't been able to salvage any bodies or given any of them a real funeral as they'd had to run immediately to evade more Death Eaters on their way to the Burrow. It had been the last time Ginny had ever seen her family or her childhood home ever again – until now.
She launched herself at her parents, one arm around their necks, and sobbed as she hugged them tightly. She wanted to tell them that she loved them but her throat was too tight and she was unable to form real words, sobs ripped from her body violently.
"Ginny!" Arthur Weasley patted his daughter's back, shocked by her reaction. That couldn't have had anything to do with Molly's scolding...He shared a startled, concerned look with his wife. What on earth was going on?
It took Ginny a while to calm down, and she cried as she hugged and kissed each of her brothers. They would've teased her for being so ridiculously female but Ron did the same, as did Harry and Hermione whom some of them (namely Bill, Charlie and Percy) didn't know very well.
Add to the fiasco of the strange "ghosts" and the painful spasms the four had gone through earlier...No one knew what to think.
Finally, as Ginny calmed her tears wrapped in her mother's arms, Harry and Ron shared a meaningful look. Hermione caught it, of course, and after nearly twenty five years of being their confidant, knew exactly what they meant by it.
"Let's head inside, shall we?" Hermione suggested. "There's a lot we need to discuss."
So this was Jules' first chapter of Harry Potter and the Time Mage, though I did change some of the words, cleaned up a few sentences, etc. And there is, of course, the name change to Harry Potter and the Time Travellers.
Like I said before, please review and let me know what you think. And please do check out my own story, Harry Potter and the Incubus Inheritance.
Thank you so very much.