EDITOR'S NOTE: I mentioned before that all three siblings had scars, but that was a mistake. Harry got his scar when he was young, but no one died in this incident. Then, after Hermione and Ron were born, their house and parents were destroyed in a fire, and they went to live with a terrible who claimed to be Lord Voldemort. They were taken away from him, and now they are living with the recently deceased Hagrid. Sorry for any confusion.

CHAPTER NINE

When Hermione opened the enormous door of the Dragon Dungeon, the dragons were still behind bars, the books were still on their shelves, and the morning sun was just creeping in through the small windows near the ceiling. But the place wasn't the same. Even though Dr. Voltrod had removed Hagrid's body, the Dragon Dungeon still had the sinister feeling that threatened to suffocate the children.

"This is an eerie, depressing place now," Ron mumbled. "It's, it's like…like someone just died in here!"

"You're right it does!" Harry exclaimed. "Because someone did just die!"

"Very true," Hermione said. "And we're going to find out how he died."

"Voldemort killed him." Harry said bitterly. The other two flinched.

"You know, Harry, you don't have to say his name all the time!" Hermione tutted. "Our parents never did!"

Harry scowled, then said, "Do you think he had something to do with my getting this lightening scar when I was little?"

"I doubt it," Ron said. "Mom said you got it in a car crash."

Hermione snorted. "You believe that rubbish? It was more than that! Mom and Dad said we were all lucky to have survived."

Harry sighed. "But they didn't survive. Well, maybe that accident. But then they died in the fire."

Ron looked angry. "If the car accident theory is rubbish, what do you have on your mind, oh magnificent witch of incredible power?"

Hermione looked thoughtful and said, "I have my theories." She looked off into the distance in a smug, thoughtful way that made Harry and Ron steam.

"Why are we here, again?" Harry asked.

Hermione snorted. Again. "Isn't it obvious!"

Ron muttered to Harry, "The more she snorts, the more incomprehensible her sentences get. Maybe the mystery is that when she was little, she was turned half-pig."

Harry snorted with laughter.

"Woah! You've got it too!" Ron cried, laughing.

"This is serious!" Hermione cried. "Do you want to go to Romania with You-Know-Who?"

The boys were quiet. They looked down at the ground, a little sheepishly.

"If we get him in Azkaban for murdering Hagrid, we'll be free of him. We just need to prove he did it." Hermione said, with the air of a parent lecturing her children. "I'll go upstairs and check in his bedroom. Maybe there's something there that will show how he killed Hagrid."

"He probably just used a killing curse." Ron shrugged. "That's what I would've done."

His two siblings stared at him, and he said defensively, "Not that I would, mind you!"

Hermione sighed. "Harry and Ron, you look in Hagrid's books for a spell that will show how a person died, or a way for detecting murders, or something!"

Harry looked cross. "Yeah, and while we're at it, we might as well make a spell that turns straw into gold!"

"Heck, let's just create a spell that shows a murder for who he is!" Ron said, with fake enthusiasm. "After all, Harry, we're teenagers!"

Harry continued, "And, after all, we don't need our wands to perform a spell. Voldemort can just keep the blasted wands, we don't need 'em, right Ron? Or should I say, The Wonderful Wizard, Mr. Ronald Potter?"

"Why thank you, Mr. Harry Potter, we'll get working right away," Ron said, sarcastically.

"Oh, stop it, you too!" Hermione cried. "I'll get Mr. Fudge to make him give us back our wands. Here, Harry, you go up to You-Know-Who's room and I'll do the researching! I'm better at it anyway!"

"Yes, ma'am." Harry and Ron both muttered and Ron went off sulkily with Hermione to look through the books. Harry suddenly wished for a house elf or a chocolate frog card that would have the answers to everything. But no such luck.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Harry was sneaking back up to the kitchen, which was where Nicholai, Mr. Fudge and Dr. Voltrod had resumed their argument.

"I still say that I have a Portkey ready and waiting, but it is on a schedule!" Nicholai exclaimed.

"Why don't you take the body to the hospital with the Portkey?" Mr. Fudge asked. "The kids told me they really wanted to experience Apparation, and I would be happy to take them."

"So would I." Dr. Voltrod said. "But that still leaves the canoe."

"What canoe?" Nicholai snapped. "There is no canoe!"

Harry didn't have to listen long behind the door of the kitchen to realize that nothing was going to be solved for quite a while. He would have time to sneak up to Nicholai's room and look around. Creeping up the stairs, Harry reached Nicholai's room and opened the door. His scar began to prickle as he looked around the room. That was funny, it didn't usually bother him this much. He heard angry voices from the kitchen which sounded like the three wizards were really annoyed at each other.

The smell in the room was terrible. It was littered with empty Firewhiskey bottles and there were clothes all over the floor. Then he saw the heavy suitcase that he had helped bring up to Nicholai's room the first fateful day he had arrived. Harry snatched it and desperately wished he had his wand; it would be easy to open it with a wand. Maybe if he… Harry looked around desperately at some of the bubbling potions, and decided he might as well try one of those. Maybe… just maybe… He crossed to look at the four different bubbling cauldrons and saw that in front of two were books that were open to a page. Harry grinned happily. Now he would know what the potions were. The first was an emerald green potion which was sizzling and looked pretty nasty. There was no book in front of it, but there was a piece of parchment with some scribbled notes and a pen which was standing upright on the paper, ready to be dictated to.

Harry couldn't help himself. He said, quite clearly, "Voldemort is a pin-headed old fool. Lots of love, Harry Potter. AKA, the Boy Who Lived." The pen quickly scribbled his words onto the parchment. Harry hoped Voldemort could read that before he went to jail. The green potion looked acidic, but he had no idea what it would do, so he left it alone. The next potion was bubbling and looked sickly brown. The book labeled it as 'The Draught of the Living Dead". Never heard of it, thought Harry. Doesn't sound important, or useful. He skimmed the ingredients. "Wormwood, Asphodel, Sopophorus Bean and Valerian Roots". Hmmmm… Nah...

The next potion was labeled, by the book "Exploding Potion". Harry perked up. It was made of Erumpent fluid and made things explode! Harry took a stirring spoon and carefully dipped into the potion. It sparked and bubbled fiercely, but then calmed as the spoon was removed, with a bit of the bright yellow liquid. Harry carefully carried it over to the suitcase, and spelled the tiny bit onto the top of the suitcase. Then he dropped the spoon and ran for cover, but not quick enough. With a huge BANG the suitcase exploded, sending shards of the suitcase flying at Harry, who couldn't help but think what a bad idea this was.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, Ron and Hermione were bickering.

"I can't find anything about revealing murderers!" Ron whined. He was leafing through a huge, old brown book and looking bored. He stretched in his sofa and sighed.

Hermione was curled in a small armchair, looking slightly cat-like. "Well, if you're going to read books like Magical Water Plants of the Mediterranean, you're not going to find anything useful."

Ron looked at the cover of his book, and sniffed, "I was so bored I didn't even read the cover. What a long, boring title for a long, boring book."

Suddenly, Hermione screamed. "I've got it!" She cried. "It's right here! Oh, wonderful! It's perfect."

Ron looked up and saw she was reading Where There's a Wand, There's a Way. He snorted. "Feel like sharing?"

Hermione looked smug and said, "Prior Incantato. From the Latin "priori prius," meaning "former, prior" and an adaptation of the English word "incantation." When cast, this spell causes a wand to create an echo or ghostly image of the last spell it performed.

Ron looked a little stupefied. "Uhhh, how does that help?"

Hermione rolled her eyes. "We get our wands back, perform this, and a ghost of the killing curse should come out of You-Know-Who's wand! Bingo!"

Ron looked puzzled, "Bingo?"

Suddenly, the two Potters heard voices. The three men were coming down the stairs, and it was obvious that they had reached a decision about transport. Then they heard Nicolai say, "This will work perfectly, I guarantee it." And they knew that everything was about to go horribly wrong.

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REVIEWER NOTES

xxmidnightxxmoonxx- There, I updated. Please don't hit anybody or become violent

AmberStarGurl- Harry Potter and Lemony Snicket are two of my favorite books as well

Ratti- I'm so glad you're a trekkie too! What is your favorite series? Original? Next Generation? I like original best, because who could beat Spock, McCoy and Kirk together? They're the Golden Trio.

luthien-yavetil- I'm glad to see that you're a Lemony Snicket fan. And also a tolkien fan, by the look of your name. Luthien? As in the most beautiful elf to ever live? I love Lord of the Rings! Thanks for reviewing!

Elle- I'm glad you enjoyed it! Thanks for reviewing!

visualpurple- Hey purpie! I finally posted! Aren't you proud?

Joe James- I don't know if they're the best orphan series. What about Frodo the orphan? Or Luke Skywalker the orphan? Pretty much all adventure stories start with orphans who are living with relatives. Spider-man, Superman, etc. I'm glad you enjoyed it, though.

Queenofinsanity I haven't forgotten this. Not really. And I am continuing.

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