This is a response to the HP Chapter Challenge issued by Southernwitch69 over at her Yahoo! Group, PotterPlace, and at The Petulant Poetess. Rules are at the end of the first chapter.

Disclaimer: I own nothing that you see here. All characters belong to the wonderful and talented Ms. J K Rowling.

Thanks go to SouthernWitch69 for beta reading this story for me. She's been motivational and encouraging.


I hate attending these events. They are always ridiculous displays of false friendship and bravado. Don't get me wrong. I still have my friends. The Unstoppable Trio will always be friends; we don't need events such as these Ministry fiascos to force us to catch up. These events are for people like Lavender Brown, enabling her to coo for the Daily Prophet reporter and cameraman and say that she used to date Ron Weasley.

Ginny's still around, too. To hear her tell it, we should've been dubbed the Unstoppable Foursome, but Harry was right to not have her involved in the end. He would have lost his focus and been more intent on protecting her than in destroying the last of the Horcruxes and finally destroying him.

Thank God I didn't have that problem.

No one would ever have been able to accuse Ron of putting his girlfriend ahead of himself. Not that he's a selfish prat. (Well, he is… but he could be worse.) He just doesn't get it, and I decided that I was not going to spend the rest of my life trying to teach him.

Don't feel sorry for me, and please don't hate Ronald Weasley for being who he is. I love him for who he is. He is sweet and caring. Unfortunately, he's just totally clueless when it comes to dealing with women. Harry likes to remind us that I once said that Ron had "the emotional range of a teaspoon." That's not quite true anymore. I'd say he's reached the capacity of a tablespoon now.

It certainly doesn't affect his love life, however. He is a Quidditch star, and he laps up the attention as if it were life-sustaining water. You should see those blue eyes light up every time some new star struck tart comes running up to ask him for his autograph. That fame coupled with his reputation from helping Harry to bring down the Dark Lord—well, you get the idea.

Personally, I am happy being in the background and letting the boys enjoy the limelight. Actually, let me rephrase that: Let Ron enjoy the limelight. Harry, too, is happy to hide out in the background. Though, he has a much more difficult time remaining back in the deep, dark depths than I do. Think about it: How would you like to get stuck with a nickname as trite as The Chosen One? Poor Harry.

But I digress. I was discussing this bloody Ministry event. They happen on an annual basis, thankfully—any more often and I would go batty. I am eager for the day when they will occur at less frequent intervals, say every ten or twenty years. Tonight, however, they are supposed to make an announcement. I have every confidence that it will be the one that I've been waiting for.

I've spent the last three years of my life devoted to my latest cause and have been fighting tooth and nail for it. Just last week, I took my report to Harry at Auror Headquarters and presented the information to him. My friend assured me that he would take the time to sift through and read my report. I am very grateful to him for that. After promising that he would review the contents with the Head of the Department of Aurors and with the Minister of Magic, I left comforted in the knowledge that he would do what was right.

I was thankful that I would not have to deal with that mass of ruddy red tape on my own.

When I was discussing tonight's gala with Harry yesterday morning, he told me that my data had been the current hot topic amongst the Aurors. He also told me they were working on something and were hoping to announce the results by this evening. I am optimistic that this means that my work has been reviewed and that the Ministry has made a decision.

I'm tired of keeping secrets from my friends, and I'm tired of the lying. It gets old after awhile. They think I'm fighting for a new hopeless cause. Ron keeps joking about my failed attempts at S.P.E.W. I quip back that S.P.E.W. was nothing compared to my failed attempts at trying to get him to take his N.E.W.T.s. The lazy arse never even bothered taking them. As I said before, he was a lost cause.

"Hermione, would you like something else? How about you, Harry?"

I shake my head. If I have another drink, I know I'll be more than slightly tipsy. I need to keep my wits about me at such a time.

"Nah, I'm all right, thanks, Ron," comes Harry's reply.

"Sure, ignore me."

"Sorry, Gin. I figured your husband would take care of you," Ron answers her with a saucy grin as he walks off towards the bar.

He makes it back to our table—with a drink for Ginny, of course—just as Scrimgeour takes the podium. He's giving his usual spiel regarding how wonderful our world is now that You-Know-Who is gone—Cripes, they still can't say his bloody name!—how Harry, Ron, and I saved everyone from his evil reign of terror, and how we need to take another moment to remember those that lost their lives during the war.

It's time. I know what he'll get to next. An announcement about all of the work I've been doing. It will have paid off.

"It seems to be a fitting time to inform you all of the work that a member of the Unstoppable Trio has been working on," he begins. A smile appears on my face.

And then, my stomach seems to drop through the floor, the words that I hear next are not what I had anticipated. "After the very thorough investigation of Miss Granger, I am pleased to announce that we apprehended Albus Dumbledore's murderer this afternoon, and he is in Auror custody as we speak. There will be a brief trial, where we do not expect to have any complications, and he will be taken to Azkaban."

The hall breaks out in thunderous applause as I bury my face into my hands. Ron jumps up and claps me on the back. "Hermione! You didn't tell us that you'd found the git! How did you do it?"

I slowly bring up my face from my hands. The words that I need to say are stuck somewhere in the back of my throat as I stare at the jubilant faces of my friends. This afternoon? They apprehended him this afternoon? As I slowly begin to process this information I find myself wondering if they waited until today to arrest him intentionally or if today was when they finally figured out where he was. Either way, what else do they know?

My gaze meets a green questioning stare. I'm not sure if he's surprised that I'm not jumping for joy like the rest of the crowd or not. He saw my report. He knew my opinion. What did Harry expect? His perplexed eyes are replaced by glittering triumph. For him, the search for Severus Snape had become personal the day Harry had chased him off of the Hogwarts' grounds to Disapparate to his freedom.

I no longer think of the events that occurred on top of the Astronomy Tower that fateful evening as a murder. I did at first. How could someone not think of it that way after hearing Harry's version of the events that took place? I was certain of Snape's guilt as much as the next person. Harry had finally convinced me of the evilness that was Severus Snape. However, since that time I've learned the pertinent information and saw Albus Dumbledore's death for what it truly was… a suicide.

More accurately, it was euthanasia—an assisted suicide for someone that was already on the brink of death.

That was what the data I spent the last three years of my life gathering stated. I had spent hours upon hours in research and miles upon miles in legwork to gather the information that I had presented to the Ministry of Magic.

No, I correct myself. It was data that I had presented to Harry. Bloody hell.

He took my information and somehow used that to find him. Obviously, Harry ignored all of the facts that I'd presented on his innocence.

How did they find him? I wonder as my stomach roils, the nausea bubbling slowly up my throat, threatening to overspill.

As I continue to stare into Harry's eyes, I begin to wonder how much he truly knows. Finally, I am able to form the words without fear of emptying my stomach for the entire room to see. My anguish is quickly replaced with anger as I continue to stare at my friend. "Harry, what did you do?" I ask, my voice barely able to be heard over the crowd.

He's smiling at me now. "We're not going to discuss this here, Hermione," he states firmly. I expect him to disengage from me and go up and give a bloody speech about the evilness that is Snape and how he, Harry Potter, had finally avenged Dumbledore's death. He may not enjoy the limelight, but this is a case where I fully expect Harry James Potter to gloat.

I am surprised when he doesn't make his way to the podium. Instead, Harry reaches over and grabs my hand, leading me out of my chair. The crowd is still excitedly chatting about this turn of events, and no one, save Ginny and Ron, even notices when we've left the room.


SS quote: "Nah, I'm all right, thanks, Ron."

A/N: This story will be 8 chapters long, and is complete. The remaining chapters are currently being beta read, so there will not be long lapses or waits in posting. So this story could be completed before the first chapter was posted, I had a few people look over it to spur me on to write more. I want to thank those gals for being patient and ignoring the slight changes in plot, minor details, and grammar errors that they had to wade through just so I could keep writing. :-)

This is a response to the HP Chapter Challenge issued by Southernwitch69 over at The Petulant Poetess and yahoo!group, PotterPlace. The rules are as follows:

This has been influenced by Doompark's 394 Challenge. The stories created from that have been amazing, so let's have a try again. I hope this doesn't sound complicated. I'll try my best to explain (A big thanks to NSS for the help with the wording).

Pairings? Choose one (Yes, there must be a love match between them.)Hermione/Severus, Draco/Ginny, Harry/Gabrielle, Ron/Luna

1. Take the month and day of your numerical birth date and add them together. (Example: My birthday is on July the fifth. 07 seventh month + 05 fifth day 12 )

2. Divide the sum by 2 to get a second number. (Example: I would divide 12/2 and get 6. Round all half numbers up to the higher number.)

3. Open up Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's (Philosopher's) Stone and use your SECOND number to figure out what chapter to open up to. (Example: I would open to chapter number 6.)

4. Use your FIRST number to find the sentence to use. (Example: I would scroll down to the 12th sentence of the chapter, even if the sentence is on the next page.)

5. The first chapter should include that sentence. Note In the case of an odd or too short sentence, you may use the one immediately before or after (include your sentence with it). I won't be going behind you to see if you have the correct quotes. If you'd like to include a cool sentence before or after your designated sentence, please do so. It's all about fun.

Example:

"Go on," he said.

This could become...

"Go, on," he said. Having said that, he stood and gathered his things.

6. Continue the process with Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets following the same formula and the second chapter will be formed around this sentence.

7. Continue with POA, GOF, OotP, and HBP in the same manner and in this order. Each chapter must be 1000-2000 words long. No shorter and no longer

BONUS:

An additional chapter or two chapters can be created from the two extra books that J.K. Rowling wrote: Quidditch Through the Ages and Fantastical Beasts & Where to Find Them. These aren't as lengthy as the others, so you'll have to find your sentence and page a bit different here.

Fantastical Beasts...

1. Use your FIRST number to determine what page to turn to. (The highest sum would be 43. Since there are only 42 pages after the foreword, if your sum is 43, use the number 42.)

2. Use your SECOND number to determine which sentence to use on that page. If your number isn't found on the page, simply use the last sentence. (There are so many run-on sentences. You'll probably have to do this.)

3. Record the sentence AND the beast's name in which is falls under. (Example: I would pick sentence 6 from page 12 and note that my beast is the Common Welsh Green.)

4. Write the chapter using the sentence and the beast from that page. Use the same length requirements as above.

Quidditch Through The Ages...

1. Use your FIRST number to determine what page to turn to.

2. Use your second number to determine what sentence to use. Record the sentence and build the chapter around it. You may not have enough sentences on the page, so simply use the last sentence if this is the case. There are many run-on sentences there, and some pictures take up a lot of room.

Use the same length requirements for this chapter.

NOTES:

If you use the six current Harry Potter books plus the 2 extra books, you could have an 8 chapter story. The chapters won't be very taxing, as the length requirements are minimum. If you do not have all of these books, please ask me or anyone else who might own them. We will gladly give you the quote you need to get started. That should give people enough time to start up something and begin posting. I hope someone takes up this challenge. If you need anything, please post for help here or send an email to me.