Hey friends and fans! Kairomaru is bringing you another chapter of Harry Potter and the Artificer Legacy! Now that Voldemort's demon is vanquished and the Dark Lord captured, the next step is dealing with the Non-Magical. There is A LOT to go over and many panicked people are going to be demanding answers. Hopefully the olive branch that Harry and family want to offer will be accepted.
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Chapter 64 – The Veil Falls Away
Amelia Bones, Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, really regretted not taking an early retirement now. It had even been a possibility a couple years ago. Before the Statute of Secrecy had just been violently torn down around them all. As it was, she watched as several Muggle vehicles rolled up towards where the colossal demon had fallen and soldiers quickly surrounded them, weapons aimed at everyone present. Up above, several of the flying machines…helicopters if she recalled correctly…were flying around, all painted similarly to the vehicles of the soldiers.
"I'm only going to say this once!" The soldier that was clearly in charge spoke up so that all of the remaining Witches and Wizards could hear him. "Drop any and all weapons you have and keep your hands where we can see them!"
"Sir…there's a child here." The soldier next to him spoke just loud enough for Amelia, Harry, Tonks, Penny, and Fleur to hear. The soldier motioned towards Harry with his head and the Commanding Officer focused on the teenager.
"Drop the weapons, son." The commander requested of Harry, his tone calmer now as he addressed the teen.
"Sure," Harry agreed, removing the sheathed Aethereum from his hip and setting it at his feet. "I must caution you not to try and unsheathe this sword though." Harry removed Dourfrost and the Artifact Scabbard from his back slowly. "It is incredibly dangerous and potentially fatal if it's drawn." What he didn't say was the quick spell he cast wandlessly on the top of the scabbard that would prevent the sword from being drawn at all. Better safe than sorry.
"I think we should just go with this for now, Boss." Tonks took out her wand, not that she really needed it anymore, and placed it on the ground carefully. Fleur and Penny both did the same as well.
"Surrender our wands? To Muggles?" Scrimgeour looked flabbergasted at the very notion, as did a few other Aurors.
"Do it." Amelia ordered, seeing a slight bit of tension leaving the Muggle soldiers at their orders being followed.
All of the Aurors put their wands on the ground in front of them, some much more reluctantly than others, until all of them had their hands in the air as the commanding soldier had requested. Tension had noticeably eased among the soldiers now. In disastrous situations like this, many people wanted control to keep themselves mentally oriented. Others needed people in authority to tell them what to do when the unexpected happened. The current situation was about as unexpected as could be, so the acquiescence of the Wizards and Witches went a long way in preventing hostilities from flaring.
"Good, thank you; now, I need whoever might be in-charge here to tell me what the hell is going on." The commanding officer spoke, looking between all of the adults in the red robes.
Amelia decided to speak up given that she was technically in charge of the most people on the Magical side of this incident. "My name is Amelia Bones, I'm the Head of the Department of Magical Law Enforcement, this attack has been perpetrated by a Wizard calling himself Lord Voldemort. We came to stop him."
"Uh huh…and you expect me to believe that?" The officer looked at her like she was nuts.
The loud sound of a helicopter approaching was heard, and it only got louder as a new military helicopter descended towards the location where the Aurors and Harry's family were located. The helicopter touched down, much to the confusion of the soldiers, but then the door opened and another small group of soldiers stepped out and were quick to march across the field.
"Captain, what is the situation?" The man clearly in charge of the four soldiers that had come with him questioned the officer of the soldiers that still held the Wizards and Witches at gunpoint.
"Sir, we found these suspicious people here after the monster fell. We've just begun questioning, but the lady over there," He motioned to Amelia. "Says she's from a Department of Magical Law Enforcement and that this was done by a wizard."
"Madam Bones, then?" The higher-ranked officer looked at Amelia.
"Yes," Amelia nodded back to the man. "You know of us then?"
"Indeed, ma'am." The officer acknowledged shortly.
"Sir, you don't really believe that, do you?" The first officer questioned him.
"Magic is real, Captain, always has been and certain members of the government have known it all along. For the better part of the last three centuries, we've worked together to keep our two worlds separate as much as possible." The higher-ranked officer told everyone outright.
"Why weren't we told, Colonel?" The Captain asked incredulously.
"Because it was 'need to know' information, and until this incident happened, you didn't need to know." The Colonel replied sharply.
"Yes, sir." The Captain shut his mouth, but still looked like he was having a lot of trouble wrapping his head around this situation.
"Madam Bones, can you give me an update on the situation?" The Colonel requested as he stepped forward, his four men at his sides.
"Certainly, Colonel?" Amelia only had the barest knowledge of the Muggle Military.
"Colonel Roberts, ma'am." The Colonel introduced himself quickly.
"Colonel Roberts," Amelia tested the name as she nodded. "This attack was perpetrated by the Dark Wizard known as Lord Voldemort. We, that is my Aurors," She motioned to the red robed Witches and Wizards. "Came to stop the assault."
"And who are these four?" Colonel Roberts questioned, looking at Fleur, Penny, Tonks, and then Harry."
"The oldest woman is one of my Aurors, Nymphadora Tonks." Amelia pointed Tonks out first, pleased by the lack of outburst at using her name. "The silvery-blonde young woman is Fleur Delacour. The dark-blonde young woman is Penelope Clearwater. The teenager is Harry Potter."
"Why are three civilians here, exactly?" Colonel Roberts could understand an out of uniform officer stepping in during a crisis, but having three civilians on a battlefield made no sense unless they'd been caught up in it and unable to evacuate or flee. "Especially a minor." He motioned to Harry.
"Mr. Potter is an Artificer, and probably one of the most powerful Wizards currently living in Britain. As for why he's here, I can only imagine he came to stop Voldemort and his demon, along with these three young women." Amelia looked over and received nods of confirmation from the four of them. "These four were the ones truly responsible for bringing down the demon and stopping Voldemort's attack."
"Voldemort has been after my life since I was an infant, Colonel." Harry spoke up for the first time since Colonel Roberts had arrived. "Speaking of which." He fed his mana into the Mana Bane chain in his hand and dragged Voldemort's unconscious body forward. "Colonel Roberts, meet Lord Voldemort, or as he was born, Thomas Marvolo Riddle. The instigator of this magical attack on the United Kingdom."
Almost every rifle among the soldiers quickly shifted targets, now being aimed at Voldemort.
"Is he dead?" Colonel Roberts questioned, eyeing the chained up Wizard carefully.
"No, sir, just unconscious." Harry shook his head. "We can make him more unconscious, if you'd like."
"More unconscious?" Colonel Roberts raised an eyebrow at the wording.
"If you'll permit me to pick up my wand, Colonel?" Tonks spoke up while pointing at her wand on the ground in front of her.
"Granted." Colonel Roberts nodded after a few seconds to consider it.
"Thank you, sir." Tonks picked up her wand and pointed it at Voldemort. "Stupefy!" The red light of the spell surprised many of the soldiers as it hit the seemingly unconscious Wizard.
For Voldemort, he went from pretending to be unconscious while listening in, to truly unconscious against his will without even being able to do anything about it because of the Mana Bane chains wrapped around him.
"He won't wake up for several hours at least, or until someone casts the counter spell." Tonks informed the Colonel with a quick nod.
"Excellent." Colonel Roberts nodded to Tonks. "So, he's safe to transport now?"
"We'd actually like to build an Anti-Magic cage to hold him, if you'd give us some time to construct it, sir." Penny spoke up next. "These chains we have on him," She held up the end of the chain she was holding. "Prevent him from casting any Magic while he's bound, but they don't prevent others from using Magic on him, such as taking him away via magical travel, like Apparation or Portkeys."
"I see, the teleportation spell, right?" Colonel Roberts was quick to recall what Apparation had been described as during his debriefing and instruction on Magic back when he'd been brought into the know.
"Basically, yes." Fleur nodded to the soldier with a smile. It was best to be pleasant in this tense situation. As a Magical Scholar, she did have a desire to correct the man on exactly what Apparation was and how it worked, but she stifled that.
Colonel Roberts was quiet for a long moment before reaching a decision. "Please, do so. I've been warned not to risk it when it comes to detaining Wizards and Witches." He then turned his eyes on the Captain. "I want the perimeter fully secured within the hour. The media is going to be swarming this place soon enough."
"Yes, sir!" The Captain saluted. "Jones, Wilson, Hughes, Green, Williams, Clarke!" The six soldiers quickly snapped to attention with salutes. "Lock down the perimeter, no one goes in or out without the Colonel's permission!"
"Yes, sir!" The six soldiers acknowledged their orders, quickly gathering a couple of men each before marching off to surround the area where the Gleam Eyes had fallen.
"Prepare a transport vehicle large enough to hold a human-sized cage." Colonel Roberts ordered two of his own men, both were quick to salute before rushing off to complete their orders.
Harry pulled out his Mokeskin pouch, and from within the pouch, pulled out his Storage Cloak. The black folds of the cloak yielded plenty of materials as Harry pulled out one item after another from it, to the shock of the remaining soldiers. The Aurors were permitted to pick up their wands again and watch over the unconscious Voldemort as Penny and Harry got to work on constructing an Anti-Magic cage.
"I'll fuse the metal together." Harry offered, already using magic to bend the metal poles into the shape of a cage. "Are those stones good enough for the Anti-Magic Area?" He looked at the mostly flat stones that he'd pulled from within his Storage Cloak.
"They're fine," Penny confirmed as she looked them over. "I'll just need a bit of time to etch the Runes and sync up the sequence into the working array."
The two worked steadily under the watch of Tonks and Fleur, along with the Aurors and the remaining soldiers, including Colonel Roberts. A cage was formed of what appeared to be steel, but even the soldiers were sure it wasn't, just based on the luster of the metal. The floor of the cage was built in two parts, making a thick floor of the same metal that held the Ward Stones of the Anti-Magic Area securely where no one could get to them. Tonks, Fleur, Penny, and Harry all added as much mana as they could to the Ward Stones, considering their own current drop in reserves. It would last a good long while though, at least a week by Penny's best estimates, before needing to be recharged.
"It doesn't have a door." Colonel Roberts mentioned of the Anti-Magic cage that now held the unconscious, and still bound, Voldemort.
"It's best not to take chances, Colonel." Tonks spoke to the officer. "Voldemort is a complete psychopath that hates the non-magical and is a mass-murderer on our side of things."
"Noted." Colonel Roberts nodded to the Auror. "We'll feed him through the bars like he's a deranged and dangerous criminal." Not exactly how SOP said prisoners should be treated, but this was beyond standard operating procedure to a ridiculous degree.
What followed for the rest of the day was Harry and family, along with the Aurors present, being dragged around for a bit. First as witnesses and as part of the escort for Voldemort's transfer to a secure holding facility. Then to be questioned on everything they knew about the situation. Minister Fudge had been brought in fairly early on, along with Prime Minister Major. Fudge had given clear instruction for the Aurors to work with and answer everything they were being asked, all the while wringing his hands and sweating in fearful anxiety.
By law, non-magical laws especially, Harry couldn't be questioned without his legal guardian present. So, Sirius had downed a Pepper-Up Potion and been at the facility as fast as possible, nearly causing a commotion when he Apparated onto the grounds without warning. With Sirius at his side, Harry had been led through the questioning and then been sent home with Sirius after a way to contact them had been set up with the non-magical government for any later meetings or inquiries.
-Wood End Cottage-
"Haaaah…" Harry sighed as he fell back on his bed after a long bath. Today had gone well, all things considered, but everything was still fucked from a Statute of Secrecy point of view.
There was no way in hell that the ICW could cover this up. The Statute was gone, broken beyond repair. Now they all had to live in this new world where Magical and Non-Magical would once more start mingling. Harry wasn't sure what that would look like or entail, but he had a suspicion that he'd be dragged into it far more than he wanted to be.
"Take it one day at a time." Harry mumbled to himself as he looked at the ceiling of his room. 'Maybe it's time to work on that project for real?' He considered the project that he'd been planning out during his down time for over a year now. "I'm sure Sirius will take me there. He has fond memories of the place."
"Harry," Penny slipped into his room and closed the door behind her. She was wearing her pajamas, loose cotton shorts and a t-shirt. "How're you feeling?"
"Tired…confused…a little worried." Harry admitted as he scooted over and let Penny slip into bed with him. He welcomed her embrace and the two kissed softly for a bit, just taking comfort from each other.
"I feel the same way." Penny admitted, snuggling closer and breathing in her boyfriend's scent. "Fleur went back home to reassure her parents that she's fine, Tonks is still being run around and probably won't be back until the early hours of the morning."
"What about you, love?" Harry asked, wondering what she'd told her parents. "You were gone for a while, and I honestly didn't expect to see you until tomorrow."
"I made sure that they knew I was fine, just a bit tired." Penny smiled softly at him. "They were concerned about my injuries, but a few Episky spells, and two potions later, and I was as good as new." She hugged him closer. "I told them that I wanted to make sure that you were okay tonight, as the youngest that actually fought Voldemort and his demon."
"You're too good to me, Penny." Harry chuckled lightly, returning her hug. He did enjoy the way her body molded against his, but they were both too tired to take advantage of their alone time.
"Let's get some sleep, Harry." Penny kissed him again, both of them reveling in their love for each other for a while before they cuddled beneath the blankets together and drifted off to sleep. They'd put off tomorrow's problems for tomorrow.
Unfortunately…tomorrow came sooner than either of them would've liked.
Waking up between Penny and Tonks (who must've slipped in a while after they'd dozed off) was pleasant though. Harry even laid in bed a bit longer to keep enjoying it. But they did eventually have to get up.
"Mmnnrrgghh…" Tonks grumbled at waking up without getting her full eight hours. "G'Morning…" She yawned and stretched as she sat up.
"Morning, Nym." Harry smiled, accepting the kiss she gave him. "Sorry we went to bed without you."
"Don't worry…" Tonks yawned again. "About it. I didn't get in until after two in the morning." She stood up from the bed, revealing her beautiful body in only some skimpy purple panties. "I can't blame you for falling asleep after what we went through yesterday." Tonks smiled, turning around and letting Harry see her tits.
"Down, Nym." Penny playfully chided as she sat up in the bed, eyeing up the Metamorphmagus. "We're all still too tired for anything physical right now."
"Spoilsport." Tonks grinned lazily as both Harry and Penny got out of bed too.
"So, how bad is it out there?" Harry decided to just rip the band-aid off.
"A complete clusterfuck, shiteshow, and all of that." Tonks replied, waving her hand in the air as if talking about something mundane. "About what I expected, really."
"Great…" Harry drawled.
Tonks put on a robe, not bothering with anything else, and the three of them left the bedroom together, heading for the smell of breakfast.
"Young Master Harry! Miss Nym and Miss Penny!" Tayla called out upon seeing them. "Sit, sit, please, you needs to eat!" The motherly House Elf urged the three to sit down as another plate of food was levitated over to the table.
"Thank you, Tayla." The three chorused, much to the Elf's delight.
Sirius and Marlie came down not long after and breakfast chatter began. Marlie was just grateful that everyone was back, safe and sound. Sirius was dreading the arrival of the Daily Prophet, not looking forward to what they'd see on the front page. Tayla was just happy as she continued to feed her family, none of the Witches or Wizards even seemed to notice they were eating much more than normal.
"Prek!" Hedwig and a Tawny Owl arrived with a copy of the Daily Prophet each. The Tawny Owl dropped its copy in front of Sirius, stole some food, and then flew back out the window quickly. Hedwig landed, dropped the paper, and then spent time looking over Harry while he petted her and fed her bits of his breakfast.
"I was right…" Sirius sighed, revealing that the front page of the paper was dominated by two stories fighting for space. The first about Voldemort's attack, and how Harry and family had defeated and captured him. The second about the most egregious breach of the Statute of Secrecy ever. Just the headline alone showed how much of a panic the Magical Community was already in as the news spread.
"Is this real?" Hermione blinked at the Daily Prophet in stunned disbelief.
"I think so…" Padma nodded slowly, also reading the paper.
Luna didn't look nearly as bothered, but that was probably because she was focusing on the good news that Voldemort was captured, rather than the fall of the Statute of Secrecy.
"What does this mean for the Magical World?" Mandy questioned her friends after setting her copy of the paper down.
None of them could give her an answer.
No answer was forthcoming from the Professors either. Dumbledore had yet to return to the castle, no doubt being run ragged in his position as Supreme Mugwump of the ICW.
The entire Great Hall was abuzz with noise that was steadily growing louder and louder.
-Death Eater Safe House-
"NOOOOO!" Bellatrix Lestrange screeched as she slammed the Daily Prophet onto the floor in a rage. "HOW DARE THEY?! FILTHY MUGGLES! I'LL KILL HARRY POTTER MYSELF!" The deranged woman continued to wail over the fate of their master.
"We'll get him back, Bella!" Rodolphus Lestrange assured his wife, the man nearly growling after having read less than half of the article himself. He'd always had a temper and over a decade in Azkaban hadn't helped that at all.
"We need information on where they're holding the Dark Lord, first and foremost." Rookwood spoke up, the former Unspeakable maintaining his calm for now. For the most part, he'd have to be the brains of the Death Eaters until they retrieved their master.
"Can we get in contact with Severus? Surely Dumbledore would know where they're keeping our master, right?" Travers questioned the group at large.
"As soon as Severus finds out, he'll tell us and we can stage a raid." Rabastan Lestrange nodded in agreement with Traver's thoughts. The man had been dulled by his stint in Azkaban, the opposite of his brother. Even after Snape's potions, something about his mind just hadn't returned fully. It was as if his emotions were muted to a degree.
"If the Muggles are really the ones holding him, then it'll be easy." Antonin Dolohov had a dark grin on his face at the thought of tearing through a few dozen Muggles to get their master back. It had been far too long since he'd gotten to have any such fun.
"Exactly," Rookwood nodded to Dolohov. "We just need to be patient for a short time until we hear from Severus."
Strangely enough, no one asked about the suspicious lack of Lucius Malfoy and his family. The three had not come to the safe house following their Lord's Great Magic. None of them would dare question their master, of course, but in the back of a few of their minds, there was curiosity as to what had happened.
-Wood End Cottage-
"Who're these 'experts' that the non-Magical papers are mentioning?" Harry wondered, seeing an article in one of the mundane papers about Magic and the hidden Magical World.
"Squibs, maybe?" Fleur offered her best guess. The Veela woman had arrived shortly after breakfast with multiple papers in her Storage Cloak, magical and non-magical alike. A few from France, a couple from Britain, and even ones from Belgium, the Netherlands, and one of each type from Spain.
"That's…actually plausible." Penny spoke up after a second to think about it. "I've heard rumors that some Magical Families basically abandon any Squibs that're born."
"It's happened in the past." Tonks confirmed with a nod. "There are cases of it in the Ministry records dealing with abandonment and neglect."
"Of course there are…" Harry sighed at the way some Witches and Wizards treated their own family members if they weren't born with Magic. "I'm sure a few of them have left the Magical World after years of mistreatment…no one thought that would come back to bite them, I'm sure."
"A few of these articles are already concerning." Penny put down one paper with a grimace. "Blaming Voldemort's actions on all Witches and Wizards, calling us demon worshippers and the like…"
"This was the absolute worst way that the non-magical could've been reintroduced to Magic." Tonks huffed and put the paper she'd been reading next to Penny's, the two articles having similarities. "If something isn't done soon…things are only going to get worse."
"We handed over Voldemort, I'm not sure what else we could've done." Harry ran his hand through his hair. "Hopefully the non-magical government makes some kind of announcement soon about having Voldemort in custody." At the very least that should help offset some of the growing negativity within Britain.
-Secure Detention Facility
"Ugh…" Voldemort stifled a pained groan as he woke up. He blearily opened his red eyes and looked around. Seeing the bars surrounding him would've normally made him sit up quickly…but his body wouldn't move like he wanted it to. He was sore, everywhere, which shouldn't have been a problem for his superior homunculus body. Instead he slowly turned over with a grunt, realizing that the damned chains that Potter had wrapped him in were still in place.
"Prisoner is awake." A male voice called out, making Voldemort's eyes snap to the source. A soldier, judging by the uniform, was standing a distance away from the cage with a rifle in his hands. He'd apparently spoken into an intercom system that was on the wall next to him.
After taking the man in, Voldemort looked around to observe the rest of his surroundings. The room was fairly large, but barren. Stone floor, stone walls, no windows. Only three other soldiers at the corners, each armed with a rifle as well. The Dark Lord then realized after a moment that his cage had no door either.
'Are they planning to keep me in here until I die?' Voldemort felt his anger spark at the mere idea. His homunculus form could go a month or more without food, and at least two weeks without any water. But eventually it would require sustenance to keep up all of its superior functions compared to a human body. 'These fools…mere Muggles think they can hold me?! My Inner Circle will slaughter you all! Then I'll be free again…just you wait, Harry Potter!' He raged in his own mind.
A short alarm went off and the door beside the armed soldier opened. Another soldier walked in with a tray and the door was sealed behind him. It was only as the new soldier was slowly walking towards him did Voldemort realize that there was food and a cup of water on the tray. Seeing what looked to be a pair of long tongs on the tray as well, the humiliating realization hit the Dark Lord.
'They're going to feed me like I'm some dangerous animal in a cage?!' He would've raged and cursed them all if he could. But he was without his wand, and even the Magic he could do without it was locked away from him by these damned chains! He swore that he'd torture Harry Potter in the worst ways imaginable for this as soon as he was free. In his nearly blinding rage, he even forgot that he was now without his Horcruxes and that any such attempt would likely see him losing his life.
-Paris, France ~Nicholas Flamel's Home-
"My word…" Perenelle Flamel muttered as she read the paper. She was an old woman, having been in her later years when her husband had succeeded in creating his Philosopher's Stone, the elderly husband and wife becoming immortal together and then watching the changes of the world over the last few centuries.
"Not a good reintroduction." Nicholas agreed with his wife. "I always wondered how long the Statute would hold." They were both old enough to have been alive before the Statute of Secrecy had even been a thing.
"It was an attempt to stop the hostility of the times…but it could've been handled much better." Perenelle had never been much of a fan of the Statute of Secrecy herself. It had been ill-thought out in her eyes, and now, three-hundred years later, it had all come crashing down in the worst way possible. "What shall we do, my dear?" She looked at her husband for his thoughts.
"I'm planning to meet with a few old colleagues. I'd like to get a feel for the situation throughout Europe." Nicholas replied, his eyes gazing over the newspaper. "I'd rather not leave if we don't have to, but there is a chance that hostilities may rise up from this."
"Yes…several groups have never looked upon the Magical kindly." Perenelle sighed lightly as she recalled several unpleasant memories from her long life. "I doubt it will devolve into open war or any such thing, but if the times become harsh again, where would you like to spend a few decades next?"
"We do still have the house in the countryside…a little rural living wouldn't be so bad for a few decades if necessary." Nicholas considered where they could go if they wanted to avoid getting involved in any potential hostilities that might spring up.
"True enough." Perenelle smiled at him softly. They'd been together for so long, a slow life in the countryside for a while sounded almost like a vacation. "I could work on my green thumb again." She joked and Nicholas laughed, recalling their early days as a couple and just how bad Perenelle had been at gardening back then.
The ancient couple weren't the only ones on the move in reaction to Voldemort's demon and attack on the United Kingdom. Timetables couldn't be moved up in most cases, but other preparations could be finished sooner. An even older Alchemist sped up his own preparations for the coming harsh times that he foresaw as well.
Voldemort is captured and turned over to the non-magical authorities wrapped in mana bane chains and stuck inside of an Anti-Magic cage. Safe to say, he's not going anywhere under his own power.
But the Death Eaters sure are pissed! They're already plotting to raid wherever their master is being held and take Voldemort back. They just need Snape to ferret out the information from Dumbledore for them.
Harry and family are looking through the news and seeing the reactions of the world to this horrific reintroduction to Magic. It's not great…no mobs or anything yet, but it's not off the table either.
Hogwarts is stunned by the news, but none of the Professors have any answers to give the concerned students.
The Flamels have been around since before the Statute of Secrecy and they've lived through it now too. They're making plans of their own to avoid any of the hostilities that may spring up if they need to. You don't live for over six centuries with a target like the Philosopher's Stone on your back without being able to disappear for decades if you need to!
Others have been agitated in their own plans by this asinine action of Voldemort's, but what will that mean for the world at large?
Keep reading to find out!
Current Mana Levels
Harry – 32,406
Tonks – 26,254
Penelope – 20,772
Fleur – 21,598
Until I get your reviews, later!