It goes without saying that there will be swearing. You have been warned.
Hermione's world began to unravel long before that fateful September 1st. It had started at the end of her 4th year at Hogwarts. Her first and very best friend, Harry, had been assaulted, tortured, and had witnessed both a friend and fellow competitor be murdered in front of him. Further, his own blood had been used to restore a wraith back to corporeal form. As bad as that was, he had been vilified for reporting the truth, and attacked several more times, the last having dementors sent to suck out his soul. Her best friend was being attacked and what did she do?
She prattled on about learning, envisioning being a prefect, maybe head girl one day. She had been wrapped up in herself, she knew. She could introspect with the best of them. Her best friend was hurting and while she did look to help him, she had all this trust that her headmaster in turn had Harry's best interest at heart. Only… he didn't. He didn't bother to show up for Harry's trial. He didn't try to see Sirius get exonerated from his decade stint in Azkaban for a crime he didn't commit.
She thought the world of her teachers in August of that year. That naiveté dissipated in September. She had been shocked to see armed Goblins enter Hogwarts. Had been flabbergasted to see slave collars put on students. She was even a little amazed that Snape had been shackled (not that the son of a bitch didn't deserve it). The Goblin had made Harry's declaration that Hogwarts was to be closed effective immediately.
September 2nd had been a busy day for Hogwarts staff and students. She had used a school owl to let her parents know she would be home on the 3rd once the Headmaster had secured a return train. Most other students had done the same as she did. Later that day owls began returning with responses for many of the castle's inhabitants.
On September 3rd, she left the school for the last time in stunned amazement along with all the other students. Many students had already gotten their letters of acceptance to other schools. To her disappointment, she didn't get one. But in all fairness, when she saw that none of the Gryffindor students got one, she understood. As smart as she was, she had been marginalized by her insistence of going into Gryffindor as a first year. That may have been a good social choice, but it was a poor academic selection as the other houses got offers. There was the reason she had earned so many points over the years vs. the rest of her house.
And that reason: Gryffindor house had been comprised of morons. There were a few exceptions, but mostly, the disparaging remarks other houses had made about the Gryffindors as a whole had been spot on. She had been surrounded by incompetence and hadn't even known it until she got kicked out of a lousy magical school.
The afternoon of September 3rd found Hermione back in London and being met by her mother who drove the two of them home in silence. Over dinner, her parents obviously wanted her to return to normal schooling, saying they could get tutors to help bring her scores up to where they needed to be. She wanted so badly to take them up on that offer, to take a chance to return to normal, but knew she had to do the right thing vs. the easy thing. She came clean and told them what the real deal was at Hogwarts and how things had gotten progressively worse.
Once she finished giving them a true accounting of what happened to her and her best friend Harry at the end of last term, they were adamant of wanting to get out of England and away from those magical terrorists. True, they loved their work, but they loved their daughter more. She finished her tale of what had happened this past summer with Harry's trial, and subsequent expulsion, and what happened at school which forced them to pick her up from the train station earlier that day.
There was much more discussion. Was the threat over? For now, the magical terrorists were somewhat neutered, but there had been no mention of the Dark Wizard. Chances were, he was still on the loose. And chances were, he was going to be looking for a way to get Harry to capitulate to his demands. That most likely included kidnapping one of his friends. Of which, Hermione was at the top of that short list.
This fueled their argument with their daughter that they needed to get out of the country for a little while. Hermione was hesitant for more than one reason. This was her home. This was her country. But mostly, if she left then how would her friend Harry ever find her? Or how would she find him?
They talked and planned. There was much to do. They were going to leave the country, but that was not going to be an overnight decision. For one thing, they needed to find an income wherever they were headed. They opted to head for an English-speaking country, and ultimately settled on Victoria, Canada. Doctors Granger began to look for a way to sell their practice in the UK and move to Canada and take a new practice there. It was going to take some doing as medical licenses were involved. They began this work on September 4th but were unable to begin the moving process to Canada until May 26th the following year. Her parents knew it would take time and wanted Hermione to continue her studies. They had meant non-magical studies, but hadn't said it.
Hermione, of course, took this as a golden opportunity to study both. She started taking intense home-schooling courses in normal subjects via a home-schooling course, as well as spending a few hours every day with Molly and her brood going over more magical subjects. At the Weasley home, she again saw many friends. Neville, Ginny, and Colin. She even made a new friend, Luna after Ron had been his usual insensitive self.
Ron, of course, was an idiot and thought the world should have revolved around his useless self. He didn't want to do much schoolwork, thinking why bother since he was going to just join the Cannons in a year to two and then everything would be golden. Hermione had to, ah, wrestle that thought out of him. She did not use full-body wrestling, but instead used the more demure choke-the-ever-living-shit-out-of-someone-enough-times-for-them-to-get-the-message approach.
Hermione knew she was a bright witch. But more importantly, she was a bright girl. She didn't need to understand everything about magic to understand magic itself. And she didn't need to know magic at all to understand what was happening to the magical world. September 5th she found herself back in Diagon Alley hoping to find a magical tutor. She noticed the new prices right away and spoke with vendors to find out why.
Magical England was in a financial meltdown. Costs were going up because people weren't buying the crap they used to. She searched the periodicals for answers. There wasn't much. The Goblin captures were headlines for days. But not much else was said beyond who was taken. Hermione's mind began making the necessary connections. She had studied a history beyond what that bloody ghost had taught. She recognized the beginning of a financial disaster that had world-wide implications to it. She was not a financial genius, but she did pay attention to trends. It helped that she had to review her parents' taxes.
A few days later she accepted the offer from Mrs. Weasley for in-home classes. She had been amazed at what Mrs. Weasley was charging her for tutoring, but she was in a bind and Mrs. Weasley knew it. And it wasn't entirely Mrs. Weasley's fault either: prices had started going up and up. The Prophet was now up to a galleon a copy. She had stopped reading it for several reasons other than financial. The paper was becoming smaller and smaller while the price kept going up, and the story content themselves were more propaganda than anything. The Ministry was in fine shape. Things would get better. Stories like that ran over and over.
She didn't know all the ins and outs of what actually happened until near the end of September when the Quibbler ran an article on the troubling finances. Of course, the article's headline of Riddle's Reversal meant more to her than most people would understand and it went on to cite how the Goblins had confiscated everything belonging to Riddle. All properties, all animals, all finances, all magicals, and even all outstanding magical debts.
That was when the true implications of what Harry had done came to light and why it was so evident that the economies of many magical societies were going down the toilet. Hermione tried to explain to Mrs. Weasley about the global economy and why the economy had become as bad as it had and why businesses were closing since no one was there to spend money that they didn't have.
Another story was run in the Quibbler of Harry's ownership of Riddle's properties by Right of Conquest, and what had happened to some of the items. This was the first time she read about those DE's in Azkaban having been euthanized. Of course, there was a list of things that DE's had done to get their super-bad-ass tattoo in the day which negated any regards to their continued existence. Hermione had grown up in a fairly isolated environment she had come to realize. She had loving parents and an extended family. She may have been bullied in school now and then prior to Hogwarts, but she had never had to deal with a Death Eater showing up on her doorstep to sell his way of life, or a green spell of death. Others had. Including Harry's parents, and even Harry himself. She had no pity for the DE's who had been euthanized. They had given up their right to be salvaged a long time ago.
Another article was run in the Quibbler a few days after that that cemented how truly screwed Magical England was. This was a list of all the chattel taken by the Goblins. There were several updates of how Lucius Malfoy was now shoveling Hippogriff dung and seemed to be addicted to it since he had purple smudges around his nose, or at least that is what Hermione gathered when she saw his picture next to his update. Marcus Flint and his father were rented out as Troll biologists. That couldn't be right, Hermione frowned. Oh, there was a misprint she later found. Father and son were rented out to Troll biologists as test assistants. Apparently they were pretty limber on their feet which was good since the biologists were testing variations on pheromones to increase that magical population. The Flints had been sought after by the biologists, the article continued, because of their uncanny resemblance to the mostly idea-less creatures.
Many who knew Hermione knew that she was a bright girl. She was very intelligent, they would say. She could recite facts, historical events, and so on. She remembered a lot of what was already written in books. But that is not the only thing that made Hermione smart. She could also mentally evaluate a situation for subtle non-verbal clues. She also had the ability to read between the lines for content that was there as well as understand what was missing. Hundreds of names were on the list published in the Quibbler. Yet only a few had their current work assignments published. She looked at the family names, located a magical heritage tree and found what she was looking for.
She then did the math of those collected and compared them to the Wizengamot seating chart. She could add. And apparently Harry could subtract. She saw that Harry now had control of 16 other family chairs for a grand total of 17 votes, or 34% of the Wizengamot. She skimmed the Wizengamot charter and saw the "must have 75% vote" mandate and realized how big Harry's plan had been.
She laughed at the thought of how Harry had done this, as well as how the magicals had let this happen. She was still chortling over the thought, and thanked Luna once again for bringing the Quibbler to her attention. Minutes later Ron came into the room and was his usual tactless self. Hermione then spent the next 15 minutes throttling the ginger into apologizing for his comment that girls didn't need to learn anything in school since they had a job waiting for them in the kitchen as well as around the house once they married a man.
Over the ensuing months, Hermione realized how much Harry meant to her. She needed to find her best friend more than anything to let him know where she was going. Even if he never wanted to see her, she wanted to let him know what his friendship had meant. She knew Harry didn't want to be found and asked Luna what her thoughts were. Luna suggested putting in a personal ad in the Quibbler. Hermione, not sure what else to do, did just that before she and her parents left England, not to return.
Late spring she and her parents left for Canada. Practice sold, they headed for a better climate. June began with the Granger family in a new country, a new house, and having to learn a new custom that was harder than it looked: driving on the right side of the road.
Time went on. Hermione and her parents met the neighbors, took trips, and enjoyed being near the coastline. Friends were made, neighborhood pets did their duty on their lawn (much to her father's annoyance), and the Canadian magical enclave was soon discovered only a thousand miles away.
August 17th started normally enough. The family sat around the breakfast nook, reading papers and enjoying coffee and tea. Promptly at 7:23am local, an owl landed on the back porch railing. Hermione look out the window and saw that a message was in its claws. She retrieved the message, returned to her seat and read the note.
Her hands began trembling almost immediately.
"Hermione?" her mother said with a concerned voice. "What is it?"
"It's from Harry. He wants to see me."
August 18th, 1996
Hermione, passport in hand and wearing a simple dress, crossed the border into the US in the early morning to make her way to the Pike Place Market in Seattle. She would meet Harry near a famous fishmonger who enjoyed throwing fish around the facility much to the tourists' delight.
At half past noon, she felt a light tap on her shoulder while sitting at a sidewalk café. She turned and smiled. "Hullo Harry, Luna."
Her two friends took seats at the table. Actually, Luna took the available seat while Harry grabbed another chair from the table next to theirs. Hermione had not expected Luna to be there along with Harry.
"You're looking good, Hermione. How are you?" Harry said.
Hermione smiled. "Actually… I am well. For some reason I feel calmer these days."
"True, you don't look stressed," Harry pointed out.
"How can you tell?"
"You're smiling," Harry said simply.
"Thank you. I'm actually surprised to see you here, Luna."
"Why is that, Hermione?"
"Well last we saw each other was at Mrs. Weasley's home-school the Friday before I left. You and Ginny were throwing spiders at Ron that Fred and George kept giving you. I had no idea you were going to be the first to find Harry. How did you find him?"
"Oh, I just asked one of the Goblins at the bank where I could find Harry and he was happy to hand over an address."
"I thought you said you used some weird mumbo-jumbo method to find me."
"Maybe I used that too," Luna grinned at him.
"So getting my address from a teller was that easy?" Harry inquired.
"No. I had to bribe him first."
"What did you use as a bribe?" Hermione also inquired.
"I promised Teller Bludsnot I would arrange him to have a dance with Ginny when she was older."
Hermione smiled, and then laughed.
"Does Ginny know?" Hermione said.
"Not at all," Luna replied. "I'll surprise it on her during her wedding."
"I think if you do that, then you may lose her friendship," Hermione pointed out.
"Oh, I have a plan for that as well. You see, when she doesn't want to dance with Teller Bludsnot, I will just ask for some hair, put it in a polyjuice container, and give it to Ron. Then if he doesn't want to perform his wifely duties that night, he will instead have to dance with Teller Bludsnot."
"Damn, Luna, remind me not to get you mad at me," Harry grinned.
"If I did that then we wouldn't have any makeup…"
Hermione looked at her two friends, an idea percolating. "Ah, okay. So how have you two been?"
"We're fucking great!" Luna beamed.
Harry barked a quick laugh, then covered it up.
"That good, eh?"
"Fuck yes!" Luna was still beaming.
"Luna…" Harry started, then stopped. Turning back to his other friend, "We're doing well, Hermione. Luna managed to track me down a few days ago for a story with her paper."
"I'm not surprised. She is a very good writer. I read her articles."
"You do? What did you think of the fonts I use?"
"Very colorful. I think the automatic changing size as the reader's eyes focuses on a word is a nice touch."
"Thank you. I suggested that to my father."
"Hermione, don't take this the wrong way, but I can tell you have a question on your mind. Go ahead and ask it. I won't bite."
"Until later," Luna smirked.
"You keep that up, Luna, and I'll withhold the spanking."
"I'll be good," she stole a sip of Hermione's drink.
"Okay, Hermione. Go ahead and ask," Harry prompted.
"You know, I was prepared to ask you what happened from last summer to today. I wanted to understand what drove you to do everything you did. To ask you why you did what you did to all those purebloods. But that is not what I really want to know."
"What do you want to know, Hermione? I promise to answer you truthfully."
She paused, then looked him straight in the eyes. "Do you think I'm pretty?"
Harry didn't pause. "Hell yes."
"Me too," Luna put out there. "Hell yes."
"Thanks," Hermione's heart was beating very fast now. "You two want to get out of here?"
"Absolutely. I have a condo near here. Let's head over there."
The three rose to leave the sitting area for the bakery café.
"So what have you two been up to since you met?" Hermione said.
"Fucking!" Luna smiled.
"Want to come back to our place and join in?"
Hermione's resolve broke. "Fuck yes! I thought you'd never ask!"
"Great! I have some strawberry shortcake. And whipped cream!"
As the three young adults walked away hand-in-hand-in-hand, none of them noticed a black line appear by a door. The line grew longer and then wider. Seconds later a young witch stepped out of the black line and watched fondly as the three young friends walked off. Her sunglasses covered eyes that smiled at the sight of a relationship just forming.
"Well? How did I do?" she said out loud. Her voice was not a whisper, and not a shout, but it was clear and loud as it was directed behind her.
"Recap what you did and what happened, please," a silky voice replied.
"I inserted a few references for Harry to find at the end of his third year and he began researching magical law from that. I then made sure Dumbledore didn't get the notice the court time had been changed. As you can see, Harry took the initiative and ran with it."
"That's it?" a male voice asked behind her.
"That's it," she agreed, turning around.
"Shit, Hermione! That's… great!" the blond smiled and gave her a hug. "Two tweaks and look at all the havoc that was caused. Even Harry never got it down to just two tweaks! At best it was, what, 417 changes? That was your lowest count?"
"Well, technically, I did get it done with one tweak," Harry admitted.
An older Luna looked at her Harry. "I don't thinking zipping into a universe in order to drop a Hydrogen bomb on Hogwarts during the summer to kill the headmaster should be counted as a successful tweak, do you?"
"Do you?!" Luna stressed it again with a small uptick to an eyebrow.
"No, dear. I managed 417 changes as my lowest count. But to be fair, I was bored so at least a couple hundred were doing some real nasty pranks."
"Two hundred, four hundred, it doesn't matter, Harry. Our Hermione managed to take out the bad guys with only two tweaks! And it was on her first try! Maybe God should have picked her to reset the multiverse with the anti-Albus wave."
"Well, I for one am glad he didn't. If he had, we wouldn't have gotten back together again," Hermione kissed Harry.
"You did a fantastic job, Hermione," Harry agreed.
"Thanks. I can't believe this was the kind of work you did for all those millennia in thousands of universes."
"Oh, initially it wasn't. At first Harry just showed up in a dimension and killed Albus and the rest of the magicals he was 'shepherding' into a new future."
"Luna's right, Hermione. I did show up in those universes and whacked one Albus after another. But it was necessary since he was shepherding them into a future of crap."
Hermione gave her Luna and her Harry a kiss. She then tweaked his nose lightly. "You know who I don't like more than Albus?"
"Snape?" Harry returned.
"Hell yes," Hermione agreed. "Let's find a reality where we can really give it to Snapey. I never liked that asshole."
"Well, I think I can make that happen. Do you have any parameters in mind, milady?"
"You know," Hermione started, her thumb and finger on her chin as she thought something out, and Luna's chin resting on her shoulder. "I wonder what would happen if we found a reality that had, say, an assassin-Harry, a battle-weary Auror by the name of Luna, a spell researcher like Susan, and an assistant Headmistress Hermione? And if we started in the future, what if we gave them an idea on traveling back in time to their younger selves. I wonder what they could do," Hermione grinned.
"I like the way you are thinking," Luna said. "Harry. Chop-chop. Make it happen."
"Yes, miladys. Your wishes will be done. Want to grab a muffin before we rip a hole in reality?"
"Do they have pumpkin?" Luna inquired.
"If they don't, I'll bring an asteroid down on their heads!"
"Yeah, yeah. Please don't. I really don't want to clean that up like the last time," Luna replied.
"Can I smite them as my enemies?"
"Did they anger you?"
"Well, if they don't have pumpkin muffins that will make you upset and that makes me ANGRY!"
"Yeah, yeah," Luna agreed. "I get it. But maybe they have a pumpkin muffin. Hermione?"
"Yes, Harry. Let's go see what they have before you bring this bakery down to its foundation."
"Okay. No fire and brimstone until we see if they have pumpkin muffins."
"There you go, sweetie," Hermione flashed a smile. "We'll get you trained yet. Even if it takes all eternity."
"Yes dears," the god-powered Harry Potter agreed as he held the door open for his two ladies to enter the bakery.
Currently, this is the end of the story. There may or may not be additional chapters in this storyline as the muse hits. There are still many more characters to write about. But for now I am wrapping this rewrite up.
As many long-time Harry Potter readers may have picked up, and I hope you have, the super-Harry, Hermione, and Luna at the end are based on the story "Multiverse" by Bobmin356. Bob sadly passed away early in 2016. He will be sorely missed, but will never be forgotten. Thank you Alyx and Bob for creating Multiverse and all the other fantastic stories. Your work is what truly brought me into the HP fandom world.
Reading stories like the original 'Charlie does the Foxtrot or Damn the Torpedoes' by Lady FoxFire, and 'Reunion' by Rorschach's Blot (which coincidentally, wink-wink, contains an assassin-Harry, a battle-weary Auror named Luna, a spell researcher named Susan, and an assistant Headmistress Hermione who go back in time) are what have kept me reading and enjoying the writings as much as I have. Thank you again, Lady FoxFire, for allowing me to muck around in your Charlie story as much as I have.
And for all that read this story: thank you one and all for reading and providing your comments. I have appreciated reading them and have used them for motivation to complete this. And special thanks for those reviewers who kept me honest with the ideas and the characters. This includes agnar, Slytherin66, and Beerguzzler500.
I will be posting my two original fan fictions I wrote years ago. They were based off Star Trek: The Next Generation. The first is: Picard's Contest (starring Jean-Luc), and the second is: Mirror Cracked (starring Riker, as well as Commander Al Bundy – and yes, that is the Al Bundy from Married With Children). Both shows were popular when I wrote these. I just need to finish edits on these and start posting. As you may surmise: both will be comedies. The electronic files I had these files stored on long since corrupted and I have to retype everything, and I'm updating it as I go along.
I continue to work a job that pays the bills for me and my family. That has not and will not change. But I enjoy writing, even as a hobby. I am currently working on several stories that I want to get published. These will be novel length and I am curious for feedback from anyone. The first story I am working on is tentatively titled: The Angry Scientist, and will have a similar vibe and style like this entire Charlie Foxtrot story. There will be swearing, adventure, swearing, aliens, swearing, cool destructive toys, swearing, monsters, and yes, more swearing. It will be a science fiction comedy story. All characters my own, all concepts my own. And the swearing is for comedy effect, not because it needs to be mean or show a character harshly. My question to anyone reading this is: would any of you be interested in reading something like that? Knowing how I've created characters, settings, and dialog you have read here, would you want to read an entire new story along that similar vein? Let me know if you can. I plan to explore this novel idea as I am having a lot of fun creating everything about it.
My second story is massively more complex. Over a year ago I watched the movie, Edge of Tomorrow. It is basically a military version of the movie, Groundhog Day. Both movies center on a man reliving the same day over and over. I had an idea from that and began creating a more complex storyline. It was original, I thought. It hadn't been done, I thought. It was sure to win SF awards, I thought. Well, I was partly right. A kind of version of my story idea had been done. It had been original. And it had won awards. The one saving grace for my story vs. this other story is that mine will be more science fiction than drama. More action than drama. More comedy than drama. As I am putting this storyline together I have found out it is much more massive than I originally conceived. I am not sure if I'm plotting way too much, should scale all of it back, or just shelve it for a bit. This book is still a long way away. Still, it is a fun bit of mental exploration of creating characters, scenes, technology, plotlines, and worlds. There is a fair bit of math involved as well, so that will take some time to gather as well.
Before I sign off, I am happy to say that I have at least one more HP story I am currently working on. It is a Star Wars / Harry Potter story. One in which Harry will have to release his inner marauder. How will the Empire survive? And… there may be a Mr. Black cameo in there. Along with ICPMs (not ICBMs). The tentative title for that one is: The Force Is Everywhere.
Thank you all for reading and commenting. You have all helped me with my writing.