I do not own Harry Potter or Superman, Marvel and DC do.
"Welcome back." Professor Tonks said as she looked at her class. "I hope that you all enjoyed your Christmases and New Year, but I'm afraid that you're now back to learning."
Andromeda waited for the small amount of grumbling and sighs to recede before continuing.
"Today, we will be topping up the potions that are used in the infirmary with the Skele-grow potion, which Madam Pomphrey has reported is getting rather low due to a certain… incident over the holidays. Any excess will be sent to St Mungo's… assuming that it is up to the required standard. Although not a difficult potion to make, one must pay attention to it, especially when adding the crushed, dried scarabs. Now, pull up and tie your sleeves, check your hair is tied back and partner up with someone from the other house. The base for the Skele-grow potion is milk, the ingredients are on the tables, but they will still need preparing."
Harry moved to one of the desks and was soon joined by a red-haired girl he recognized.
"Miss Bones." He nodded in greeting.
"Lord Potter." She curtseyed with an impish smile and he sighed.
"Call me Harry."
"You can call me anytime." Susan Bones giggled, causing Harry to roll his eyes. "Sorry, couldn't resist."
Harry shook his head. "Never mind. Okay, the instructions are on the board… you start the potion off and I'll dice the… chinese chomping cabbage?"
Harry looked down at the worktop where a bowl was holding a small, green ball of leaves that kept opening and closing in a manner reminiscent of a mouth. "Huh."
Susan paused in her milk-pouring and followed his gaze.
"…Excellent work, Mr Longbottom." Andromeda said as she waved her wand above the cauldron in question. "This is a potion that I would not hesitate to use myself, if I needed to."
Neville almost glowed from the praise as Andromeda moved onto the next cauldron. Susan watched nervously as the professor echanged a couple of words with the students on the next bench, then Professor Tonks moved across and waved her wand above their cauldron.
"Miss Bones, Mr Potter, a very good potion, one that is technically excellent." She nodded. "While it could have done with another two stirs to maximize the potency, that sort of thing will come with practice. A very good result, you may decant it now."
Susan sagged in relief as Professor Tonks moved on to the next pair and Harry glanced over just in time to see Hermione give Neville a thumbs-up. Harry reached under the desk and pulled out the tray of vials stored underneath.
"You write the labels, I'll fill the bottles." He offered and Susan nodded, reaching for her bag to pull out a quill and ink. Harry turned his attention to the task of pouring the Skelegrow into the vials, making sure that none escaped from the funnel as he ensured each vial was filled to the marked line. The sound of Susan's quill as it glided across the pre-spelled parchment labels barely impinged on his concentration as hetipped the last of the potion into the fifth and final vial. Putting down the cauldron, he carefully stoppered each vial, then picked up the empty cauldron, putting the used implements into it.
"I'll wash these, you get the vials to the desk." He offered and Susan grinned.
"At last, a male who knows how to wash up after himself!"
"Very droll." Harry chuckled despite himself.
"Always." Susan replied, the smirk evident in her voice.
Draco Malfoy kept quiet as he filed into Charms. At dinner, he had sat so that he could keep a wary eye on Potter and his lackeys, but even with the eavesdropping charm that he had found in his father's private study over the Christmas holidays, he hadn't managed to catch Potter plotting like he had done before.
He still felt a mild irritation at how Potter had squirmed out of the well-deserved punishment that the Wizengamot had been about to deliver to him. He'd been looking forwards to seeing what Umbridge's cryptic message about beggaring the mudblood-spawn had actually been about and until Potter had pulled the fact of his Order of Merlin out, everything had been going brilliantly.
And damn those idiots who had insisted on giving him an undeserved award for simply not dying! By that reasoning, he and everyone else at Hogwarts should have Second Class Orders as well.
"Welcome back!" Flitwick chirped from his podium at the front of the classroom and Draco pulled himself out of his revenge fantasies.
After all, he didn't want to risk angering the wielder of the axe that had slain the fathers of his two minions.
Filius smiled as he looked down from his raised podium at his attentive students.
"Welcome back!" He smiled at his students. "Since we all hopefully enjoyed ourselves over the yuletide, I believe that it is time for us to learn an interesting little charm known as the Cheering Charm.
"Now, if used correctly, this lovely little spell imbues the target with a feeling of happy contentment. If overpowered, it can cause hysterical laughter. I have seen it used that way in dueling matches, if one cannot stop laughing, one cannot cast many spells or defend against them.
"In order to be able to cast the Cheering Charm, one must not be unhappy as the caster's mental state does affect the charm to a degree. Trying to cast it while depressed simply causes the spell to fail and of course, one must always be aware of the mental state of the intended recipient is in. Should they be angered, a Cheering Charm could cause them to become reckless, attacking with no thought of their own personal safety.
"Now, in order to cast the spell, you must move the wand like this…"
"…and ten points to everyone who managed to perform the charm." Flitwick smiled at the students, quite a few of whom were looking almost blissed out or were chuckling. "And now…"
Filius' wand moved in a complex manner which caused everyone to sober up.
"The Sobriety Charm." He said in response to the questioning looks. "Although it was designed to temporarily counter the effects of imbibing excess alcohol, a small tweak made it able to counter Cheering Charms. However, it's quite complex, so until you pass your OWLs, it'll be a bit beyond you.
"Now, since Professor Black gave you some homework, I won't set any for tonight. Therefore, off you go and have a pleasant evening! Class dismissed!"
Harry used the recall function of his holster to stow his wand, watching as Neville, Hermione and (surprisingly) Malfoy did the same. Picking up his bag, he waited for his friends to join him before leaving the classroom, turning left as they headed back to Ravenclaw tower.
"That was fun." Neville commented as they reached the staircase.
"Did you see that Malfoy has an arm-holster too?" Hermione pointed out. "He used to have a belt-holster. I wonder why he changed it?"
"I think it finally got through to him what a disadvantage normal holsters are." Neville mused. "Of course, some of the Gryffindors still shove their wands into their pockets."
"That could make it difficult to pull out in an emergency." Harry stated. "Of course, that's not a problem for some of us."
"You and that weird magic of yours." Neville shook his head as Harry ducked Hermione's attempted dope-slap. "My father heard about it and I caught him trying to do it himself."
"Did he have any luck?" Harry enquired and Neville shook his head.
"Nope. Not even a spark. Hasn't stopped him trying, though."
"Why would he do that?" Hermione asked curiously. "I mean, sure, Harry's other magic is impressive, but it's a recognised Family Magic, right?"
"Which means that stealing it or trying to force him to teach it is illegal." Neville agreed. "Doesn't mean other people can't try to reproduce it. As long as they can state under Veritaserum that they didn't have either direct or indirect access to the original spell records, it's not illegal. Several of the spells we use today are a result of that and most of them are actually easier or more powerful than the original spell."
"It takes training in Torquasm Vo before you even have a chance of doing the version I do." Harry shrugged then he caught Hermione's look. "Sorry, it's another Family Magic. If it helps, it's sort of similar to Occlumancy."
Hermione sighed, but nodded in reluctant acknowledgement.
"Come in, Severus."
"Minerva." Severus nodded as he entered the staff meeting room. "My apologies for my lateness, I had to deal with a minor matter in my House. Nothing major and it has been dealt with."
"Understood, Severus. Now that you are here, we can begin." Minerva said as Severus sat down. "Now, every year has had at least one lesson today and the Heads of House are all here, so is there anything that anyone thinks is important?"
"Nothing beyond the normal happening in Gryffindor," Septima Vector said with a frown, "And that worries me. I had expected the twins to do at least one of their pranks by now."
"They're probably re-evaluating their jokes." Remus supplied. "The book that Sirius and I made for them places heavy emphasis on not slipping over into being bullies… something that we weren't all that good at avoiding back when we were students here."
"True… unfortunately" Sirius added while Severus nodded in agreement.
"I'm not sure if I should be reassured or worried." Septima winced. "I'll make sure to keep a close eye on them, though."
"Nothing out of the ordinary happening in Ravenclaw." Filius supplied.
"Hufflepuff are settling down." Pomona Sprout added.
"My Slytherins are acting as they usually do." Severus stated. "I have made it clear to them that their actions should not impact the other houses."
"Excellent work, Severus." Minerva said with a small smile. "Now, does anyone have anything to report about the lessons?"
"There it is, the coast of Ireland." Voldemort waved at the line on the horizon. We angle north and go round the top, then we head for Mallaig and enter Loch Nevis. With the runes we have to reduce the draught of the boat, we'll be able to get all the way up to the end of the Loch near Camusrory, allowing us to go north overland to reach Hogwarts which is located on a concealed spit of land on the Loch an Dubh Lochain. Non-magicals simpy can't see the castle or the land it's on unless they get close and even then, they only see a set of ruins which the protective spells prevent them from considering worthy of exploration or mentioning to others."
"Impressive." Gellert noted. "I'd heard of Hogwarts, but I'd never actually visited it."
"Soon you will." Voldemort smiled. "Soon, we all will. Hogwarts is the most important place in Wizarding Britain. Once we claim it as our own and activate the new wards, we will be most of the way to toppling the Ministry of Magic and bringing the country under our rule."
"The new wards, my Lord?" Pettigrew asked and Gellert smiled paternally.
"Yes indeed. You see, using Tom's memories of the one time that he saw the Great Wardstone under Hogwarts, we have been able to craft a replacement. While the Wards will still need tweaking to ensure there are no gaps, the fact that there are new wards within moments of the old ones collapsing will be a nasty shock to anyone trying to respond."
"Wow." Pettigrew breathed in awe even as he turned the wheel slightly to change course. "My Lord, that's incredible!"
"We couldn't have done it without Gellert's Pensieve and expertise with setting up Wards." Voldemort said magnanimously. "Soon, we shall be the rulers of Wizarding Britain and from there, we shall seize all of Europe."
"And from there, we shall extend our reach until the world is ours." Gellert finished with great satisfaction. "The Magicals will rule over the Muggles and it shall be we who rule the Magicals."
"It will take a while, though." Voldemort mused. "I must first contact my few remaining followers and prepare them for our glorious victory."
"..our glorious victory."
Amanda crept away from the hatchway as silently as possible. As the oldest of The Five (as they referred to themselves), she had taken it on herself to act as their leader and mother-figure, despite only being the oldest by under a year.
Diana's suspicions about what the adults had really been planning had gained acceptance with the others, but now they had actual proof that not all was as it had originally seemed.
Making her way down to the Head, she entered it and closed the door behind her before switching on the light to reveal the other four waiting for her, Diana perched on the toilet and the three boys sat on the floor, Peter in the shower.
"Diana was right." She said quietly. "The adults are plotting more than just taking down a corrupt government."
"Damn." Diana half-whispered. "I don't like being right about this."
For a long moment, the only sound was the throbbing of the boat's engines, then Peter spoke up.
"They saved us from those killer-wizards, though. We owe them… right?"
The silence returned as the five struggled with the newly-revealed complexities of the situation as revealed to them.