DISCLAIMER: This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by JK Rowling, various publishers including but not limited to Bloomsbury Books, Scholastic Books and Raincoast Books, and Warner Bros., Inc. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended.


The First DA Meeting


Harry yawned and stretched, trying to get the kinks out of his muscles. It had been a long night, and most of it had been spent planning for the first DA meeting to be held that night. He glanced at his watch and pressed a button to get the time.

Four fifty a.m.

Time to get dressed, he thought tiredly.

The room he had been given for his own was more than he could have wished for. It was a large circular room, with a four poster bed, which was situated on the right side when you entered through the door. On the opposite end, was a semi circular desk that was built to fit with the curve of the wall, it was large enough to suit his needs perfectly. A number of shelves had been built in the wall to the left of the desk, more than enough to hold all his books comfortably.

Right beside the desk, towards the right, was a large window that had a magnificent view of the lake and part of the Forbidden forest.

Harry walked into the attached bathroom and quickly splashed some cold water on his face to drive away the cobwebs in his head. He immediately felt more alert. Heading over to his wardrobe, he quickly pulled on a pair of black track pants and a green sweatshirt. Then, slipping on his sneakers, he made his way out of the room.

He walked out of the tiny passage that led to the room and a second later he was out on the corridor leading to Gryffindor Tower, the tapestry depicting a battle between a Goblin Battalion and a dozen Mountain trolls falling back on the entrance he had emerged from, effectively hiding it.

He made it to the Gryffindor common room a couple of minutes past five and found Ginny, Pat and Neville already waiting for him.

"Sorry, I'm late," Harry apologized. "Let's head out, shall we?"

They navigated their way through the deserted corridors, heading towards the Great Hall. Five minutes later, they were out of the castle, and making their way towards the lake.

The morning air was invigorating as they started their lap of the lake, their breath frosting due to the chill in the weather.

Harry ran besides Neville, keeping the pace slow so that he could keep up. Neville's face was red with exertion by the time they reached the halfway mark, but he ran on determinedly.

Harry was very pleased with him. A week or two more and Neville would be able to make the whole run easily.

The run completed, Pat led them in a series of stretching exercises to warm them up for Aikido lessons. When they were done, the four sweating teens headed over to the Room of Requirements and began their lessons.

The first half of them, Pat partnered off with Harry and they practiced some of the more advanced techniques against each other, while Neville and Ginny practiced their basic moves. The next half, Pat paired off with Ginny, and Harry with Neville, teaching them further exercises.

Harry was patient with Neville and he found that the other boy tried very hard to learn as best as he could. Overall Harry was pretty satisfied with him.

The session over, Pat and Ginny left for Gryffindor tower and their much needed showers.

Wait a minute, Nev," Harry said, putting a hand on Neville's shoulder to hold him back when he saw he was making to leave too.

"What's up, Harry?" Neville asked curiously, more than a bit tired. "By the way, do you have any more of those potions? I could sure use one right now."

Harry shook his head. "Even if I had it I wouldn't give it to you. Take it too often and you get addicted to them."

Neville sighed and nodded, indicating he understood.

"Come on," Harry said leading him to the center of the room. He closed his eyes and the room rippled and changed in front of their eyes.

It had changed to a plain room with all four walls a stark white. The wall right in front of them had a round target situated in the center, at about shoulder height.

I want you to cast the stunning spell at the target ten times. Try and hit as close to the bull's-eye as you can.

Neville nodded. He stood up straight and raised his arm to fire the spell.

"Stop," Harry said sharply.

Neville raised an eyebrow questioningly.

"Your positioning is all wrong," Harry explained. "Stand with your right side facing your opponent, so that your body makes a smaller target. Bend your knees a little, don't keep them so stiff. Your head should face the target head on, and keep it as still as possible when you cast."

Neville did as Harry had told him and raised his wand, taking careful aim. "Stupefy."

The aim was off and it hit several feet to the right of the target.

"Try again," Harry said calmly. "Keep firing till you finish ten casts."

Neville nodded.

"Stupefy." It again hit a couple of feet to the right.

"Stupefy." It was a bit nearer this time. Only a few inches to the right of the target.

"Stupefy." This time the spell was too low and it hit below the target.

"Stupefy." It clipped the target on the top right.

"Stupefy." It hit the target on the second last ring on the bottom right.

"Stupefy." It missed completely, going several feet left.

"Stupefy." Bullseye.

"Stupefy." It hit on the third ring from the center, right below the bullseye.

"Stupefy." It hit the third ring above the bullseye.

Harry nodded. "An acceptable effort for the first time. A month later I want to see you hit the target dead center seven times out of ten."

Neville nodded. "I'll try my best, Harry."

Harry closed his eyes and concentrated.

When he opened them, the target was moving from the left to right in a ten feet radius in a straight line.

"Ten stunners. No waiting in between. Go," Harry ordered.

Neville began casting the stunners, one after the other. He only managed to hit the target twice, and nowhere near the bullseye.

Harry closed his eyes and concentrated again. The target now began to move down from the right to the center in a diagonal line and back up to the left, forming a V shape.

"Again, ten stunners," Harry said encouragingly.

Neville began to cast them. This time he only managed to hit the target once. He looked very downcast at this.

"Don't worry, mate," Harry said soothingly. "You'll get better with practice."

Neville nodded.

Harry closed his eyes and changed the target again. This time it began to move around in random patterns. Vertically and horizontally, diagonally and in curved patterns.

Neville didn't even wait for Harry and he began casting. He only managed one hit.

Harry again changed the target, so that now it was moving at different speeds as well as in random patterns.

This time Neville again managed a hit, though Harry suspected it was a bit of luck involved in it.

Harry closed his eyes again and the target was back in the center of the wall with large digital numbers flashing above it.

"Okay, now I want you to cast as many stunners as you can in ten seconds at the target. Start when I say."

"Okay, I'm ready," Neville said, taking his position.

"Go," Harry said, and the clock began counting down to ten.

Neville began at Harry's command. He only managed three stunners.

"Okay, that's it," Harry said with a small smile. "I want you to come down here and practice this as often as you can. By the end of the month I want to see some very different numbers."

Neville nodded wearily. By now he felt both physically and magically depleted. By his count he had cast over fifty stunners in a very short space of time. His body wasn't used to casting this much magic in so short a time frame. Something else that would change in a couple of months.


By the time Harry and Neville got down to breakfast after their showers, Hermione, Pat and Ginny were finishing theirs. Ron, ofcourse, was busy with his second helping.

Harry sat down beside Hermione and piled on a couple of eggs from the nearby platter.

"Anything interesting in the paper?" he asked Hermione.

"Minister Bones brought the Bill to allow the Aurors to use lethal force against the Death Eaters before the Wizengamot yesterday. It was passed with a 32-8 majority," Hermione replied, shooting him a smile.

"I suppose Kingsley and Mad-Eye will be pleased," Harry said as he took a bite of his toast.

Out of a corner of his eyes Harry saw Neville piling eggs, bacon and sausages onto his plate. He dropped his toast and called for Dobby.

The next moment Dobby appeared with a slight pop and looked at Harry attentively, rocking back and forth on his heels in excitement.

"Clear Neville's plate, Dobby," Harry said quietly.

Dobby snapped his fingers and all the food on Neville's plate disappeared including the bit of sausage he was about to bite down on.

"Hey!" Neville cried out in outrage.

Harry ignored him. "From now on you will be in charge of Neville's meals, Dobby. For breakfast he can have two eggs, either poached, scrambled or boiled. With it he can have two pieces of toast, but whole wheat bread only. He can also have a small bowl of fresh fruit and a small glass of juice. But no pumpkin juice. For Lunch, he can have either chicken or fish with some steamed vegetables. Dinner will be soup and a sandwich and some salad. He is to have no sweets, no dessert, no dairy products and no snacks in between. Once a week he may have some red meat but in a reasonable quantity."

Neville's mouth dropped open in shock.

"Dobby understands, Harry Potter, sir," the tiny House Elf said eagerly.

"That's inhuman, Harry. I'll starve to death like that," Neville protested.

Harry looked at him and smiled wryly. "I'll risk it."

Further talk was stopped by Prof. McGonagall walked up towards them and handing out class schedules. She stopped beside Pat and handed her a light green, official looking envelope.

Pat opened it nervously and pulled out the letter. A moment later she was beaming excitedly. "I passed! I got an Outstanding!"

"Congratulations, Patricia," Hermione said, smiling broadly.

"I really have you to thank for a lot of it, Hermione," Pat said warmly. "All your help was much appreciated."

"I'm always happy to help," Hermione replied, sporting a pleased blush.

McGonagall handed Hermione and Ginny their schedules, before handing Harry a letter similar to Pat's.

Harry had a ton of butterflies in his stomach and he looked at Hermione anxiously. She just smiled at him reassuringly.

He opened the envelope slowly, sliding the letter out.

Mr. Potter,

Below are the results of the exams you sat for last week.

The scores are based on the following basis : -

A score of A, E, and O are passing scores and will count as one OWL.

Scores of D and T will mean that you have failed that particular subject and have not attained an OWL.

Since you have already completed your OWL exams last year these scores will not add to your final results. But you will be eligible to sit for the classes if you attain a passing grade.


Griselda Marchbanks,

Head of the Wizarding Examination Authority.

Subject... Theory... Practical

Ancient Runes... A... A

Arithmancy ...E...O

Harry dropped the letter on the table, a stunned look on his face. He had passed Ancient Runes? How had that ever happened? He was sure he had failed.

Hermione shot an anxious look at him at seeing his face and then quickly grabbed the letter. She scanned through it quickly and then squealed happily.

"You passed!" she said excitedly, nearly bouncing in her seat. "And with excellent grades too! I'm so proud of you."

"Indeed," McGonagall said, giving him the briefest of smiles. "You have done quite well, Mr. Potter."

"Thank you, Professor," Harry said with a smile of his own. "And, Hermione, if I passed it was all due to your coaching. I still can't believe I passed Ancient Runes."

McGonagall nodded and handed him, Neville and Ron their schedules. She stopped a second before Ron. "Mr. Weasley, after a lot of deliberation I have decided that you are the right one to lead the Gryffindor Quidditch team. I expect you to work hard and bring the trophy back to Gryffindor this year," she said, before handing him the golden badge of Quidditch Captain.

Ron looked speechless with shock. He just goggled at Professor McGonagall.

Harry leaned forward and slapped him on his back. "Congratulations mate!"

A slow smile lit up Ron's face till it was so big that it looked like it would go all around his face. He raised the hand with the badge in it into the air and gave a great whoop of joy.

He was soon hugged by a beaming Hermione and then a proud looking Ginny. Fred and George set off a couple of Whiz bangs discreetly and were hollering loudly, causing McGonagall to glare at them. Dean and Seamus gave him slaps on the back and Katie gave him the thumbs up sign from down the table.

"Thanks, mate, I was honestly not expecting this. I mean, if anybody deserves to be captain, it's you," Ron said, turning to grin at Harry.

Harry shrugged. "I'm glad you got it. I wasn't going to be playing Quidditch this year, anyway."

Silence greeted this statement of his.

"Not playing? What do you mean, Harry?" Katie asked quietly.

"You are the seeker," Fred exclaimed.

"We can't play without the seeker," George agreed.

"I'm sure you guys will find a replacement," Harry said apologetically. "I bet Ginny can do the job again in a pinch."

"Not if I'm playing Chaser, Harry, which I plan to do," Ginny replied, shooting the idea down.

Harry shrugged. "I'm sorry. Hold tryouts, you'll find somebody."

"Is this because I was made Captain?" Ron asked suddenly.

Harry turned to Ron in disbelief. "What?"

"Are you not going to play because you didn't make Captain?" Ron went on, missing the exasperated looks Ginny, Hermione and Pat were shooting him.

"Yes, Ron, I am so unbelievably jealous of not making Captain that I refuse to play," Harry replied in a biting tone. "I didn't make Prefect and didn't even make Captain. My life is over."

He got up and collected his book bag, angrily slinging it over his shoulder. "Now, excuse me while I go find a quiet corner to cry at fate's cruelty."

Saying that, he walked out of the Great Hall and headed down to the Dungeons.

Potions was the first class. Oh joy!


Harry entered the Potions classroom five minutes early and took a seat in the front of the class. Slowly, others trickled in.

Padma Patil and Mandy Brocklehurst took a seat nearby and the seat behind him was taken by Susan Bones and Justin Finch Fletchley.

Terry Boot and Anthony Goldstein ambled in a few minutes later.

Very few others had managed to get into the class as they hadn't got the required Outstanding grade. The rest of the class was mostly filled with Slytherins – Blaise Zabini, Theodore Nott, Daphne Greengrass, Tracey Davis, Pansy Parkinson, and a boy that Harry was sure was called Adrian Rookwood.

Harry felt most of the class staring at him and whispering. Pansy and a few Slytherins, on the other hand, were giving him poisonous looks. Harry just ignored them all.

Hermione came in a minute later and sat down beside him, muttering something about thick redheaded gits.

The bell rang for class to begin and the whispering died down. A second later Snape walked through the doors, heading straight for his desk. Harry got a glimpse of his face to see how his mood was like, as it would set the tone of what he could expect for the rest of the class. He didn't like what he saw. Snape looked vastly irritated.

He was calling roll, when the door of the classroom opened, and none other than Draco Malfoy walked in. His face was still a little bruised but other than that he looked fine.

"Sit down, Mr. Malfoy," Snape snapped, "Class has already begun."

Draco glared at the Potions master for a long moment before he muttered something that sounded suspiciously like "Traitor."

Snape looked up sharply and gave Draco a hard glare. Draco glared back defiantly, until he was unable to meet the cold eyes of the Potions Master and sullenly took the seat besides Pansy. He then looked around the class, scowling heavily at all those that dared to look at him. When his eyes met those of Harry's pure hate shone from them. Harry had never seen that much loathing in Malfoy's eyes before today, even though they had always hated each other.

He gave a mental shrug. It was to be expected.

"Today, we will be attempting to brew Veritaserum. This is a very advanced potion so I expect all of you be very careful and diligent. You are in Advanced Potions now, if I see any melted cauldrons or silly first year mistakes, I shall be most displeased," Snape said softly, his voice dripping with disdain.

He waved his wand at the blackboard, which was immediately filled with instructions. "Begin," he said and walked into his Potions storeroom, leaving them alone to start brewing.

They all started work immediately. The potion was long and complicated to make.

Hermione caught Harry's hand gently. "He didn't mean it," she whispered into his ear. "You know how Ron is."

"Oh, he meant it all right," Harry replied softly, as he measured out water to add to his cauldron.

"He just jumps to conclusions too quickly, but you know he cares for you," Hermione persisted.

"I don't need you to explain his actions to me, Hermione, he's nearly an adult and he can do that himself," Harry said coldly. "Besides, right now I really don't care. I have a lot of things to worry about other than Ron's ego hassles."

Hermione kept quiet after that and they both worked on their Potions in silence.

Harry reflected on Ron's behavior as he crushed his Billywig stings using his mortar and pestle. He was incredibly hurt by Ron's words, both in Grimmauld Place and now today. Did he really think so little of him?

He sighed. Perhaps it was for the best. If Ron felt that he was so petty that he would quit the Gryffindor team because his best friend was made Captain then maybe he would stay away from him. It would probably save his life.

Now that Hermione was dating Ron she would probably spend a lot of time with him. It might be possible to keep his distance from her too.

If it kept them both safe it was the only thing to do, right?

Then why did his heart seem to ache so suddenly?

Harry shook himself from this line of thoughts and began to pay full attention to his Potion. Snape had taken him in his class very reluctantly and he couldn't afford to screw up and been thrown out.

By the end of the class he felt he had made very good progress on his Potion. He carefully stirred in the Salamander blood and stirred the potion seven times clockwise and the thirteen times counterclockwise and then watched with a satisfied smile as it turned a dark blue colour that was about right for the first stage of the potion. He quickly put a stasis spell on it and ladled it into a jar before sealing it and clearing away his workspace.

Perfectly brewed Veritaserum was a lighter blue at this stage. His wasn't quite that good by far, but it was a decent attempt.

He turned to glance at Hermione's potion and saw that she had gotten it almost perfect. He smiled and shook his head. Trust Hermione to get even a tricky potion like this right on the first go.

Snape came around, checking everybody's Potion. He mostly passed the Slytherins without comment, though he did give Pansy a glare for her abysmal effort.

He didn't say a word when he saw Harry's Potion but when he reached Hermione's Potion he stunned both Harry and Hermione by nodding at her and muttering, "Passable attempt, Granger. Next time I expect you to get it perfect."

Hermione was stunned for a second, before she broke out into a huge grin. It was the first time Snape had ever given her any semblance of praise or approval.

When the dismissal bell rang Snape called out to Harry. "Potter, remain behind."

Harry was expecting this and nodded for Hermione to go on.

Snape waved his wand at the door and it shut and locked with a bang. Another wave and a powerful ward went up to keep out eavesdroppers.

"Explain your behavior of yesterday, Potter," Snape said coldly.

Harry raised an eyebrow. "The Headmaster has already spoken to me about this. Also, the incident happened outside Hogwarts, so I don't understand why I have to explain anything."

Snape glared at him poisonously. "Do not try my patience, Potter. I agreed to help with this club of yours because I understood you wished for Slytherins to join too. And then I hear you went about and beat three of them up like a mindless troll."

"Whatever happened was not an attack on the Slytherins," Harry protested. "He was baiting me and went too far. That's why I fought him."

Snape looked at him in disgust. "You have no control over your mind or your emotions, Potter," he spat out. "This is one of the reasons I know you'll never amount to anything. If a sixth year can make you lose control so completely then you won't last seconds against the Dark Lord."

"Look, I know I messed up," Harry bit out. "It won't happen again."

"You didn't just 'mess up', Potter, you have complicated a lot of things that you do not even understand."

"Look, I'm sorry, okay? I made a mistake and I admit that. But I can't very well take it back. I'm telling you that it will never happen again. What more do you want from me?"

"Your apologies make no difference now. That fool, Draco, shot off his mouth yesterday and when Lucius finds out he will not spare him."

"Then he should learn to keep his big mouth shut," Harry replied coldly. "I have no sympathy to spare for him when he got himself into the situation in the first place."

"And what will you do, Potter, when he attacks you one of these days to get his revenge, as he is won't to do now?" Snape said, sounding at the edge of his patience.

"If he is foolish enough to attack me again he will find that I can defend myself remarkably well against the likes of him," Harry said with a shrug. "But you don't need to worry, I'll keep my distance from him, I have no intention of fighting with him anymore."

Snape was silent for a moment before he sighed and nodded.

"What do you have planned for today's meeting, Potter?" he said finally.

Harry quickly outlined what he planned to do. Snape listened in silence and it was obvious that he didn't agree with a lot of what Harry was planning to do. But having no real objection to make he quietly nodded.

Harry turned to go and was at the door when Snape's voice stopped him cold.

"Oh, and Potter, Our private lessons will begin this Thursday after the DA meeting. I trust you have a place in mind to hold them in?"

Harry nodded.

"Good, I believe I shall greatly enjoy them."

Harry had great trouble stopping himself from shivering at the menace in Snape's voice and quickly walked out of the classroom.


The next class was Transfiguration and Snape holding him back had made him late for it. He knocked on the door and quietly entered.

"Take a seat, Potter," McGonagall said looking up from taking roll.

Harry glanced around and quickly took the empty seat besides Neville.

"Today we will begin to start learning Conjuration, a very difficult branch of Transfiguration," McGonagall said, glancing around the classroom. "Conjuration is creating objects without using a medium to transfigure them from. You bend your raw magic to your will to create the object. It is one of the trickiest magic's you will learn in this class so I expect you all to pay close attention."

Hermione was sitting in the desk in front of Harry along with Ron and she was nearly on the edge of her seat with excitement, eager to begin.

"We will start with conjuring small coat buttons. I doubt many of you will be able to manage more than that in today's class."

McGonagall showed them the wand movements and explained the process of intention and visualization before releasing the magic. They all took copious notes off all she said, as many had heard how difficult Conjuration was.

Harry had learnt Conjuration over the summer and so this particular lesson was not very challenging for him. He saw that Hermione got it right on the first few tries, as expected. She then moved to help Ron, who was finding it much more difficult.

Harry saw that Neville was having a very hard time of it. He was trying again and again, his face screwed up in concentration, but he wasn't able to conjure anything.

Harry placed a hand on his shoulder.

"Close your eyes," he said softly.

Neville looked at him in confusion.

"Just do as I say," Harry insisted.

Neville reluctantly closed his eyes.

"Listen to my voice and block everything else out. Tell me when you are ready."

Neville nodded after a minute.

"Think of the button you want to conjure, how it looks like, every tiny detail you can think of. Tell me when you have it fully visualized."

Neville nodded after a minute. "I think I can see it how I want it."

"Good," Harry replied, "Now, try and feel your magic. Concentrate on the feeling of your wand in your hand. You'll feel a slight tingling feeling. Concentrate on that."

Neville was silent for a few minutes and then he smiled. "I feel it!"

"Very good," Harry said approvingly. He took Neville's wand hand in his own and moved it in the pattern McGonagall had shown them. "You should be able to push your raw magic through your wand if you concentrate on what you feel on your fingertips. Now, keep the image of the button in your head and at the same time try and bring forth your magic. When you can do both, do the wand movement and release the magic."

Neville nodded and furrowed his brow, concentrating hard. A minute later he twirled his wand in the proper movement and released his magic.

A small button popped out and fell with a clatter onto his desk.

"Well done," Harry said patting Neville on the back.

"Five points for that excellent piece of conjuration, Mr. Longbottom," McGonagall said from behind them, a small smile on her face.

"And take ten points for helping him, Mr. Potter."

Harry smiled. "Thank you, Professor."

Neville's face lit up with happiness. He hardly ever got any points for Gryffindor and he was as pleased as punch that he got the spell right.

"Thanks, Harry, I would have never got it if it wasn't for you," he said earnestly.

"Don't mention it. You don't give yourself nearly enough credit, Nev. You can do anything you set your mind to," Harry replied, shrugging the thanks off casually.

The rest of the lesson passed by fairly quickly after that and when the dismissal bell rang he was again held back, but this time by McGonagall.

"Potter, we have covered Conjuration quite well in our summer lessons. All you need now is practice, lots of it. I think it's time we moved on to the Animagus transformation," McGonagall said as she rummaged around in her desk drawers, looking for something.

She removed a thick, aging old tome from within and handed it to Harry. "Read the first ten chapters before Friday, we will hold our lessons after dinner then, 8 pm sharp."

Harry nodded. "I'll do that, Professor. I also wanted to tell you that I appreciate you taking out time to help me."

"I have a strange feeling that if I hadn't helped you, you'd have tried it on your own, Potter. At least this way I can keep an eye on things," McGonagall retorted.

Harry grinned and after putting the book in his bag he headed to lunch.


Dinner was long past over and students began trickling into the Great Hall for the first DA meeting. The Hall had been cleared by the House Elves and all the tables were stacked neatly in one corner.

The room soon filled up and it was soon evident that nearly the whole school was present.

The doors opened and Harry entered the room nervously, followed by Snape. He found himself even more nervous when he saw the amount of people gathered inside.

He walked towards the front of the room, where a small podium was erected and turned to face the crowd.

After casting the Sonorous spell on his throat he hesitantly began. "Hi, welcome to the first meeting of the Defense Association," he said slowly, looking around at all the faces.

"I'd like to thank Professor Snape for agreeing to help out with this club. His knowledge of the Death Eaters and Voldemort is second to none."

There were loud gasps at his use of the Dark Lord's name and even several screams.

Harry sighed. He hoped that this meeting would make things better but he somehow doubted it. The fear was too ingrained.

"We know why he is here, Potty, but what do you think you could teach us?" Draco sneered from the front of the crowd.

"I doubt he would be able to beat me, let alone Death Eaters," Blaise Zabini said with a derisive laugh.

"Yeah, how about it, Potty? A duel, you and me, no restrictions," Draco said spitefully.

Harry looked at him coldly. "There will be no dueling here today. And if you have any doubts in my ability to teach you, then you may leave."

Draco smirked. "Chicken?"

"Yeah, my knees are knocking," Harry said sarcastically. "Now either shut up or get out. The next time you open your mouth I'll take points."

The door opened at that moment and Dumbledore and some of the staff entered the room.

"Would you mind if me and some of the other teachers sat in on the meeting, Harry?" Dumbledore asked politely.

"Sure thing, Professor," Harry said with a shrug.

Dumbledore conjured a few seats in the corner and he and the teachers sat down and turned to look at Harry attentively.

With Dumbledore around Draco and the others settled down immediately.

Harry cleared his throat. "At first I thought we could start this meeting with the basics of dueling. But I think we have something even more important to cover tonight."

Harry looked around the room and saw that he had everyone's attention.

"The reason this club exists is to teach us how to fight, and one of the things I have learnt is that before you learn how to fight it's important to know why we are fighting. We have always had our differences and our rivalries, but in this war it will no longer be about petty duels with schoolyard hexes. The choices are two, pick a side or stay out of it, but to make this choice it is necessary to know more about why this war is being fought. Does anybody here know the reason why this war is being fought?"

Pansy Parkinson, who was standing next to Draco, sneered disdainfully. "What sort of stupid question is that, Potter? Everybody knows that the reason this war is being fought is to restore purebloods to their proper place in society and return the magical society to a golden age."

Harry looked at her an eyebrow raised. "Wrong. And five points from Slytherin. Next time you talk to me in that tone you'll be thrown out of the club."

Pansy went red with anger.

"Anybody else?"

"It's because of the Slytherins, isn't it? Most of them are the ones going about killing people and go on endlessly about all of this pureblood nonsense. Hell, even You-know-who is a Slytherin," Seamus said heatedly.

"Wrong," Harry said, shaking his head. "This has nothing to do with Slytherins. The one responsible for resurrecting Voldemort was a Gryffindor."

"Why don't you tell us what you think the reason is, Potter," Daphne Greengrass said curiously.

"Power," Harry said simply. "Any of you thinking otherwise need to take a closer look at things."

"I don't understand," Daphne said slowly.

"The attacks on Muggles, Voldemort's views on Pureblood supremacy, his views on how wizarding society should be are all illusions meant to mask the real reason. You see, Voldemort never intends to attack the Muggles on a large scale, he knows he could never win," Harry replied.

"What hogwash!" Draco yelled angrily. "He's the most powerful wizard in the world."

"He could be as powerful as Merlin and it wouldn't matter," Harry said calmly. "You see, the problem is that most of you know next to nothing about Muggles. Do you know how vast their population is? In the billions. We, on the other hand, number around two hundred thousand in Britain, at most, probably no more than a few million in the world. We depend on the Muggles for the food we eat, the clothes we wear, the small day to day necessities we use. Everything from the toothbrush to tea leaves are manufactured by them. We cannot possibly survive without them. The Muggles have also outstripped us in many regards. They have weapons that are so fearsome that nothing we could throw at them would match."

"What sort of weapons?" Theodore Nott asked doubtfully. "Some of the Dark Arts is enormously powerful."

"They have an explosive device that is called a Nuclear Bomb. It is capable of leveling entire cities. When it explodes nothing can survive, even bacteria does not survive the explosion. After the bomb explodes, the area which it was dropped on, as well as nearby surrounding areas, become uninhabitable for over a decade. You can't live there lest you be poisoned by the radiation. No crops can be grown there, no water can be drunk from there. It becomes a wasteland."

"Level entire cities? You're kidding, right?" Theodore scoffed.

"Not at all. If you don't believe me do your own research in the Library or talk to our Muggle Studies Professor. In fact I think it would be wise of you to do your own research about everything we talk about," Harry replied. "The Americans dropped one on Hiroshima in Japan during the ending stages of the Second World War. The results were horrifying in the extreme."

He paused for a second before he continued. "Ofcourse, this is a weapon that has almost never been used except for the once since it was developed. It's more for threat value than for actual use, atleast in theory. But they also have other weapons that they do use. Muggle Law Enforcement and the Armed Forces use a weapon called a fire arm. These weapons fire a small metallic projectile at incredible speeds. If this hits you there is a good chance it will kill you. Of course, you can defend against this with magic. But they have guns that are capable of shooting dozens, if not hundreds of these projectiles at you in under a minute. There isn't a shield in existence that would stand up to that kind of a barrage. You should also do some reading on some of their more deadly weapons like missiles, grenades, tanks, jet fighters, etc. Once you have done your research on all of this you should realize that the Muggle Prime Minister is kept updated of the magical world and is well aware that we exist. At the moment the Death Eater attacks are written off in a number of ways after the Obliviation squads are done but they will find out about us if there are any really big attacks upon them. There is only so much you can hide. Consider what would happen if they ever found out that there is a secret society of witches and wizards who have been killing people indiscriminately. They would go to war against us. But we have magic, which is undoubtedly an advantage over them. But how much of an advantage is it when you face a thousand to one odds? Voldemort knows all of this, considering he was raised amongst the Muggles himself."

"The Dark Lord raised amongst Muggles? He is the noble heir of Salazar Slytherin himself! What lies will you say next, Potter?" Adrian Rookwood sneered. "All of this is sheer nonsense. Is this what you plan to do in this Defense club? Try to brainwash us all?"

Harry smirked. "When Voldemort says he is the heir of Slytherin he forgets to mention that he had a Muggle for a father. A father who abandoned him and his mother and left him to be raised in a Muggle Orphanage."

"The Dark Lord a half-blood? You really expect anybody to believe this nonsense, Potter?" Blaise Zabini asked incredulously.

Harry simply shook his head in exasperation. "You lot are supposed to be Slytherins, the ambitious, cunning and resourceful. Have you never wondered what Voldemort's real name was? Where he studied? Surely you don't think he was named Lord Voldemort at birth."

None of them had an answer to this.

Harry snapped his fingers "Dobby."

There was a loud pop and Dobby appeared before him. "Does Harry Potter, sir, be needing anything?" he asked hopefully.

"Would you bring me my Pensieve, Dobby?"

"Dobby will bring it right away," the tiny elf said, before vanishing with a pop.

Harry glanced up to see Draco Malfoy turn purple with rage at seeing the former House-Elf of the Malfoy's and realizing that he worked for his hated enemy now.

Dobby was back a second later with the Pensieve and he left after Harry thanked him.

Harry conjured a small table and placed the Pensieve on it. "This is a Pensieve. It is a device you can view memories in. The memories within can be tampered with, but you'd need to be as proficient in the Mind Arts as Professor Dumbledore or Professor Snape… or Voldemort, ofcourse."

He quickly removed two silvery strands from his temple and placed them within the Pensieve. Then he tapped his wand on a certain rune twice and stepped back.

A large cloud of mist rose out of the Pensieve and started to form a scene from Harry's second year.

"Well," said Riddle, smiling pleasantly, "how is it that a baby with no extraordinary magical talent managed to defeat the greatest wizard of all time? How did you escape with nothing but a scar, while Lord Voldemort's powers were destroyed?"

There was an odd red gleam in his hungry eyes now.

"Why do you care how I escaped?" said Harry slowly. "Voldemort was after your time."

"Voldemort," said Riddle softly, "is my past, present and future, Harry Potter…"

He pulled Harry's wand from his pocket and began to trace it through the air, writing three shimmering words:


Then he waved the wand once, and the letters of his name rearranged themselves:


"You see?" he whispered. "It was a name I was already using at Hogwarts, to my most intimate friends only, of course. You think I was going to use my filthy Muggle father's name for ever? I, in whose veins runs the blood of Salazar Slytherin himself, through my mother's side? I, keep the name of a foul, common Muggle, who abandoned me even before I was born, just because he found out his wife was a witch? No, Harry. I fashioned myself a new name, a name I knew wizards everywhere would one day fear to speak, when I had become the greatest sorcerer in the world!"

The memory stopped and most of the Slytherins were looking stunned. Before they could say anything another memory started to play, this time the scene from Harry's fourth year, the Dark Lord's resurrection.

The memory started with the resurrection ritual and was interrupted by more than a few screams of fear. Harry privately thought that showing the memory might not have been one of his brighter ideas after all. Then it got to the part Harry had wanted them to see.

"You stand, Harry Potter, upon the remains of my late father," he hissed softly. "A Muggle and a fool…very like your dear mother. But they both had their uses, did they not? Your mother died to defend you as a child…and I killed my father, and see how useful he has proved himself, in death.…"

Voldemort laughed again. Up and down he paced, looking all around him as he walked, and the snake continued to circle in the grass.

"You see that house upon the hillside, Potter? My father lived there. My mother, a witch who lived here in this village, fell in love with him. But he abandoned her when she told him what she was.…He didn't like magic, my father…

"He left her and returned to his Muggle parents before I was even born. Potter, and she died giving birth to me, leaving me to be raised in a Muggle orphanage…but I vowed to find him…I revenged myself upon him, that fool who gave me his name…Tom Riddle.…"

When the memory stopped playing there was complete silence in the vast Great Hall. Not a single one of them knew what to say.

"As you have seen, Voldemort isn't a Pureblood. The only reason he attacks Muggles is because he was mistreated by them as a child. Let me also point out that he was Slytherin's heir by his mother's side. When he was resurrected he used my blood. If a half-blood's blood is 'filthy' then his blood is further contaminated by mine."

Harry stopped for a second and took a deep breath. "I think you also saw what would be your position if you ever chose to serve him. Ask yourself if a person that requires you to kiss his feet would ever share power with you. I do not believe in Pureblood supremacy and I do not believe that any of us were born to serve another. You may feel free to believe in the Pureblood supremacy that I hear being bandied about, but try and find proof for it. Let's not be hypocrites, shall we?"

With these last few words the first meeting of the DA ended in pandemonium.


Quoted directly from JK Rowling's Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

Quoted directly from JK Rowling's Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.