What if Dumbledore were defanged and declawed, with regards to Harry, before Harry started his magical schooling?
Bribes and Tracking the BWL
Wednesday, 11 April 1990
1 year 4 months and 20 days before 1 September 1991
The day after Fudge takes office as Minister for Magic
In the private office of Cornelius Oswald Fudge
Lucius smiled a completely insincere warm smile. "Congratulations on your election, Minister Fudge."
Fudge smiled back. "Please, Lucius, call me Cornelius. We can be friends, can't we?"
"I'd like to think so," Lucius said, still smiling. "And as a friend, I'm about to do something to help you out."
So saying, Lucius pulled from his pocket a tiny moneybag, enlarged the moneybag to regular size and dropped the moneybag on Fudge's desk. Clink. Lucius explained, "This is in case your recent election campaign has outstanding debts. The moneybag holds five hundred galleons."
Fudge opened up a drawer of his desk and dropped the moneybag into the drawer—clink—then shut the drawer. Fudge's look at Lucius now was shrewd. "That's a friendly thing you did for me, Lucius. How can I show my appreciation?"
Lucius replied, "I find Amelia Bones to be overzealous and bothersome. I can't convince her that my Death Eater activity all was done whilst under the Imperius Curse."
Fudge said neutrally, "I agree that Amelia certainly is dedicated to her job."
Lucius said, "My concern is that she'll arrest me on some silly charge and will convince you to order me to be questioned with Veritaserum in Courtroom Ten. At which time, I'll reveal embarrassing secrets. I'd gladly pay you another five hundred galleons if you'd give me a ministerial pardon for all my supposed Death Eater activity. Which as I say, I was Imperiused into doing."
Fudge gave Lucius a sharp look as he asked, "Would you be willing to swear on your magic that whatever illegal things you did between 1973 and 1981, you didn't do of your own free will?"
"No, I can't swear such a thing on my magic. But the reasons are complicated and embarrassing. I wish to not embarrass Narcissa publicly."
"I see. You're asking me, Lucius, to stick my neck out for you. For me to do this, it'll cost you five thousand galleons, not five hundred."
"Certainly," Lucius agreed. He pulled from his pocket another moneybag, this one bulging, and a third moneybag (this one empty). Lucius waved his wand, speaking a spell which included the words "five thousand galleons." Gold galleon coins moved out of the full moneybag into the empty one.
Lucius waited until Fudge had finished writing out Lucius's pardon. Then Lucius casually remarked, "Corban Yaxley has the same problem I do. If you could write a pardon for him as well, C-O-R-B-A-N, Y-A-X-L-E-Y, I'd be grateful."
Fudge smiled greedily; but what he said was "Purebloods have enough problems without needing to worry about Amelia Bones bothering wizards when she shouldn't. Hand me another five thousand galleons and I'll soothe your friend's worries."
"Splendid," Lucius said, "Here comes another five thousand." Lucius waved his wand again, spoke the coins-transfer spell again, and another G5 000 was transferred between the moneybags. Clink-clink-clink.
Eight minutes later
Malfoys did not show their emotions—otherwise Lucius would be grinning when he walked out of Fudge's office. Lucius had walked into the idiot's office being willing to pay twenty thousand galleons for an "Imperiused Death Eater" pardon; but now he was walking out with two such pardons and for half that price.
Best of all, during the entire conversation with Fudge, Lucius had carried a recording orb in his pocket. If Fudge ever betrayed Lucius, Lucius could easily prove to Amelia Bones that Minister Fudge had accepted G10 500 in bribes during his second day in office.
One week later: Wednesday, 18 April
Lucius's good fortune continued. He had paid out another 130 thousand gallons to Fudge, and had bought pardons for another twenty-six of the Dark Lord's most fervent followers.
And every knut of that additional G130 000 was secretly documented: Cornelius Fudge's greedy words, and the clink of coins in moneybags, all had been recorded by seven more recording orbs.
Anyway, when the Dark Lord returned, now he would have twenty-eight Death Eaters legally free to serve him. Lucius was certain that House Malfoy someday would be well rewarded by the Dark Lord.
As Lucius flooed back to Malfoy Manor, he (almost) smiled with amusement. Fudge the moron not only was taking bribes from Lucius, but now Fudge was all but begging Lucius for advice. So much was Fudge hungry for Lucius's counsel that whenever Lucius's advice clashed with the verbal spewings of Dolores Umbridge, it was Lucius to whom Fudge listened.
At Malfoy Manor, Lucius ate luncheon with Narcissa, then walked out of the manor house. Narcissa, if she noticed this, would presume that Lucius went outside to tend to his white peacocks.
Instead, Lucius drew his wand from his pocket; he then conjured a current map of Great Britain and a self-inking quill. Then Lucius cast a Malfoy family-magic spell that acted like a Point-Me spell, but for people instead of objects—
"Localise la personne magique Harry James Potter." Locate the magical person Harry James Potter.
The Malfoy grimoire, besides giving Lucius this spell, also had explained "triangulation." With the spell, which was repeated as needed, as well as some map-marking and Apparation, it took Lucius only three minutes before Disillusioned Lucius was standing in the street in front of a disgustingly Muggle house.
This house looked exactly like its neighbours, except for the 4 above the mail slot.
Lucius checked the house's wards. He discovered that the wards were present, but shockingly weak. The wards for "evil intent" would keep out a Slytherin who had not gone through his second magical maturation at age fifteen, but any evil wizard or witch over fifteen? He or she would suffer only minor pain—a full-body knee-scrape.
Lucius was willing to bet all of the Malfoy coinage vault that it was the bearded Muggle-loving fool who had erected these wards on Potter's house; but Lucius could not begin to guess why the wards were now so weak as to be almost worthless. What was Dumbledore thinking?
The sun was bright overhead, so Lucius wrote down the Apparation Coordinates for where he was standing, then Apparated himself back to Malfoy Manor.
At Malfoy Manor, Lucius made himself revisible, then put his wand back into his silver-snake-head cane, whilst Lucius finalised his plan—
This evening, he, Lucius Malfoy, would return to Little Whinging, Surrey and would cast the Killing Curse on Harry Potter and on his Muggle housemates.
Lucius was sure that the DMLE, as underfunded as the department now was, would cause Lucius few problems; but if Lucius were arrested, he was sure that now he could buy another pardon from Fudge. As for Dumbledore, Lucius had no worries about him at all—the worst that would happen to Lucius tonight would be that Dumbledore would tag Lucius with a Stunner. Lucius did not bother to worry whether Dumbledore might cast an harsher spell than a Stun spell at him.
Six hours later
6.45 that evening
The sun was casting long shadows when Lucius Malfoy, Disillusioned invisible, again stood in the street by the house where the Potter brat lived. By sunlight, Lucius saw that one of those painted rolling machines rested in front of Potter's house. Meaning, Potter's adult housemates were home.
Lucius drew his wand from his silver-snake-head cane and walked briskly from the street towards the house's front door. Dumbledore's weakling wards, beyond making Lucius feel like he was suffering a full-body sunburn, did not block or dissuade Lucius from his planned attack.
The Muggle front door likely was locked; if so, Alohomora would unlock the door. Lucius thought, Bugger that! Instead, Lucius cast a Silencing Charm on the door, then blew the door to splinters with Bombarda.
Lucius, with his wand in his right hand and his snake-head cane in his left, entered Harry Potter's Muggle house. Lucius made himself revisible; he wanted the Muggles and Harry Potter to see their killer.
Lucius smiled as he thought, Tomorrow, when news of this breaks, every Death Eater in Wizarding Britain will be thinking, "Killing the Brat Who Lived—why didn't I think of that?"
AUTHOR'S NOTE: In other of my stories, the so-called "blood-wards" are in fact vampiric wards that are powered by a siphon off Harry's magic; but Dumbledore calls them "blood wards" to guilt-trip Harry into spending a certain amount of time each summer with the Dursleys. However, in this story the "blood wards" are what they claim to be—except that Dumbledore has made a disastrous presumption. Dumbledore set up the blood wards to be powered at first by Lily's love for her son, then to be recharged by the love between Harry and Petunia and between Harry and Dudley, who all are related to Lily. But alas for Dumbledore's design, the strength of those loves, H-P and H-D, is nil. To make an analogy between the Privet Drive blood wards and an automobile battery, what Lucius discovers is that the rubber belt that turns the alternator has broken long ago, and now in 1990, the car battery's charge is almost gone.
In canon, none of the bad guys make any attack on Privet Drive before Harry's seventeenth birthday. But what if one bad guy knew (or suspected) that the Privet Drive blood wards would fail before 1997?