Chapter 24 / Epilogue.
The Headmaster's office was a flutter with teachers.
"Calm down everyone. We need to start the meeting." Albus glanced over the crowd as they quieted. "We're here to discuss the problem children. First off we'll start with Neville Longbottem. How is the boy doing?"
Professor McGonagall stood up.
"The boy has progressed nicely and although at the bottom of his class he has shown an adequate talent in Transfiguration."
She sat back down and Professor Flitwick stood.
"I agree. He has improved enough that he should stay."
Professor Snape sneered and didn't stand.
"His potions are dismal. If it weren't for the fact that he can't be dropped for just one class I should like to put him out on his ear."
Professor Sprout glared at Professor Snape.
"Neville is wonderfully talented in herbology and I hear he's decent in astronomy as well."
Professor Sinistra nodded her assent.
"Well then, He'll stay. Next, Wayne Hopkins,"
The professors spent a couple minutes discussing various first years whom were having trouble with classes.
"Finally," Professor Dumbledore sighed softly before continuing, "Harry Potter."
Professor McGonagall was the first one up.
"You can't seriously be thinking of keeping him here. He's unfit for our teaching methods. He can't even say the words properly."
Professor Flitwick nodded and voiced his agreement with Professor McGonagall.
Professor Dumbledore frowned.
"We must keep him in the school. Is there any way you can work with him?"
A round of stunned faces followed the pronouncement.
"What will the board of governors say. We shouldn't be keeping on a child that can't practice magic."
"Ahh but he can." Dumbledore responded to random teacher number B with a twinkle in his eye. "We've all seen him do it. It's not that he doesn't have magic. The problem is teaching him how to use it, and that is our job."
"I'd say it's favoritism because he's the boy who lived." Professor Snape snorted.
"Albus, you seem very insistent on this boy staying. Why?" Professor Kettleburn asked.
Professor Dumbledore sighed before placing an additional silencing and anti-spying charm on the room.
"You must give a wizard's oath that what I tell you will not leave this room."
A stunned silence followed the proclamation. It took a few more moments before all of the teachers made the vow.
"There is a prophesy that was made in 1979 pertaining to the Dark Lord." He paused. "You also know that I do not believe him to be dead."
The professors urged Dumbledore on.
"I take a great risk showing this to all of you, but in order to keep Harry here risks must be taken." He turned and pulled his pensive out of its resting place, placed it on the table, and drew a memory from himself to place it in the pensive.
Seconds passed before the ghostly image of a younger Trelawney appeared over the liquid.
"The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord approaches ... Born to those who have thrice defied him, born as the seventh month dies ... And the Dark Lord will mark him as his equal, but he will have power the Dark Lord knows not ... And either must die at the hand of the other for neither can live while the other survives ... The one with the power to vanquish the Dark Lord will be born as the seventh month dies..."
The office was immediately filled with a din. All of the professors demanding answers to different questions. Only two of the professors were quiet. Professor Snape sat with his fingers steepled by his face and Professor Trelawney sat staring at the pensive with a look of shock.
Harry woke with the worst headache he could ever remember having. It was even worse than the time Ranma and he had gotten into Genma's sake.
Harry threw his thoughts to the last thing he could remember. He remembered Quirrell standing in front of a mirror. The man had hurt Rlocky and Harry had to make him pay for it. There was a . . . something.
Harry couldn't remember. He remembered there had been a fight and Quirrell wasn't very good. Then . . . Something green?
Harry tried to calm down. He took slow deep breaths and centered himself before trying again.
There had been something green on the back of Quirrell's head. It was ghost like. Harry was sure that he had pulled out his Omamori. He had gotten it at Kinkakuji a long time ago as protection against spirits. The charm had worked for him in the past so what went wrong this time? Something had to have gone wrong or he wouldn't be laid up right now. He frowned at this and winced when the movement made his head throb some more.
"Ahh Harry you're awake I see."
The voice stabbed though his head and Harry wanted to murder whoever it belonged to. Or at least rip out their voice box. The only problem with that plan was that he'd have to open his eyes first and Harry was positive that would be a bad idea.
Harry felt a soothing presence moments before soft hands held a cup to his lips and a soothing voice that he had trouble placing spoke.
"Albus I will not have you interrupting my patient's rest."
Soon a minty liquid ran into his mouth and Harry felt his headache receding. He opened his eyes tentatively and noticed Madam Pomfrey glaring at Professor Dumbledore. He smirked internally.
"Harry, my boy, I'd like to ask you a few questions."
Madame Pomfrey sighed before giving in.
"Remember Albus he shouldn't get too excited."
Harry just waited while professor Dumbledore agreed and Madame Pomfrey went to her office.
"Now Harry," Professor Dumbledore smiled before continuing. "I went to the ministry and immediately returned due to a sense of foreboding. When I arrived I found you next to the shattered remains of the Mirror of Erised and a dusty pile of clothing."
Harry frowned. What happened after he was knocked out.
"What happened to . . ." Harry paused as he tried to remember the name Hagrid had called Rlocky.
"Don't worry, the stone has been destroyed." Professor Dumbledore said soothingly. Harry continued to frown.
"No not that. Is . . ." Harry couldn't remember the name, but didn't want say Rlocky because he knew Professor Dumbledore wouldn't know whom he was talking about. "Is he going to be alright?"
Professor Dumbledore raised an eyebrow and smiled.
"Nicholas will be just fine. He and I had a little chat and agreed that the destruction of the stone is all for the best."
Harry held back a soft growl and looked at his hands. The right one was wrapped in a bandage. Seeing the bandage must have been a cue because his hand started hurting. He pushed the pain aside.
"No, I mean Rlocky, My friend. Is he OK?"
"Who?" Professor Dumbledore looked confused.
"Rlocky." Harry sighed, "Professor Quirrell hurt him. When I found him he was unconscious and I couldn't wake him up." Harry couldn't help himself, he could feel tears threatening to show in his eyes. He would be a man and hold it in, but it was hard. There were a few moments of uncomfortable silence before Professor Dumbledore answered.
"Fluffy is going to be fine. He was just sleeping." Harry felt an immediate sense of relief.
"Why couldn't I wake him up?" He returned his gaze to the headmaster.
"Music soothes him and as long as music plays, he will sleep. He is a magical dog after all."
It took moments before Harry realized that he had wreaked vengeance on a man who hadn't really hurt his friend. He blushed slightly and unconsciously reached for his rattail.
"AieE. Ita" (Ouch)
Harry clutched his bandaged hand while glaring at the amused visage of the headmaster.
"When am I going back to China?" A quick change of subject was always good at avoiding further embarrassment.
"It will take us at least two weeks from end of term to cast all the tracking charms and find your cousin."
"Where will I be until then?"
"We will get you a room at the Leaky Cauldron, You can get all of your supplies for next year but the Defense book as we don't know which books will be in the curriculum. Professor Quirrell seems to have gone missing."
Harry nodded but didn't say anything more. Harry glanced about the room and noticed a pile of boxes and plastic wrapped candy on his bedside table. An eyebrow shot up without his consent and he looked back at Professor Dumbledore.
"What happened down there is a topic of discussion throughout the school." The headmaster gestured to the pile. "Although I would like to know what really happened down there and where one of my professors is."
Harry just shrugged in response.
"Harry it's important that I know. As your headmaster I must insist you tell me."
"I don't know what happened to him Professor Dumbledore." Harry shrugged slightly again, "we were fighting and then I went unconscious. I don't know what happened after that."
Professor Dumbledore gave Harry a look that said this conversation would be brought up at a later date.
"Then I shall let you get your rest."
Harry grunted in agreement and fell back to sleep.
Ok, Here's the end of Year one. It's a nice ending, a good ending, Or at least I think it is. I know you've got questions on what was with the deal with the easy tasks and such. Remember in Book one, They waited until after curfew to follow Quirrell. Here Harry was basically on the man's tail, so the Chess board hadn't been reset and the key lock was also weak from having just had the right key open the door. So, easier.
Before you yell at me about it being Harry's mother's love that stopped Quirrell and not some Shinto charm. You're right, The charm just helped, but as it incinerated upon the attempt burning poor Harry's hand. It never could have been enough by itself. Also the mother's love wasn't enough by itself either. Remember in the book Professor Dumbledore had to pull Quirrell off of Harry. So Here the combination was strong enough to eliminate the threat.
Because Harry went in alone and Quirrell went Mr. Dusty before DD got there, No one knows what happened in the chamber. So now there are wild theories circulating, but no facts.
Oh And I'm not going to start year two for a while, I want to participate in National Novel Writing Month, Which is in November. So I won't be working on fan fiction for that month. I also want to get more of A different Home done. So that will be my next finishing project for the while.
Thanks to everyone who reviewed, You needlessly stroked my ego. It's nice to hear and get suggestions. Specifically:
Bobboky, You'll have to wait till third year to hear the indepth explanation of what the unicorn did to Harry. I hope I explained the locket in this chapter.
Lichan, Thanks so much for the Wand holding Harry back idea. I'm not ashamed to say I took it. I stopped commenting on what he thought of his teachers because all of them but Snape have given up and only call him "Harry". Snape just calls him "Boy". Neville will eventually become Harry's friend. That'll probably be much later though.
Darknight3030: Dumbledore assumes Harry already knows about his parents sacrificing themselves for his sake. Even if he were to tell Harry that, Harry wouldn't want to give up the name he's worked so hard for, that and Harry's a Ronin because he wouldn't dare to presume the Potters were lords. He will on the other hand honor and pray to his ancestors on their side as well to make their afterlife better. Harry also doesn't know he's got an inheritance. That and changing your name doesn't change your family so he'd still get it. He wasn't disowned. He probably might consider hyphenating his name like Saotome-Potter or some such.
Gyre, This is only the first time he's landed in the Hospital wing. He usually takes care of himself. Other than that, If he had an easy time of it, where would the story be interesting?
Rachel Sedai, Oh Harry's got the hang of magic, he just doesn't know it. That and his teachers need to realize the best way for him to learn is non-verbally. He's doing it all wrong at their insistence.
YumiAngel, Thanks :-) I don't like all the "hero Harry" stories, they assume so much of good character and admirable qualities.
Mithros. Yes part of the reason that he's failing is that he grew up in Japan, the other part is because of the unicorn.
Enlu-tarsonis. Thanks for your review, it's nicely critical without being mean. I'm sorry that this story won't make it onto your favorites list, but I'm writing it for me and for my ability to improve which I've been noticing a decisive lack of. Hopefully it will get better, but no-one seems to be willing to help me out with it. Ah well.
Crystlshake: Thanks, It's nice to know that someone else thinks I'm getting better.