Disclaimer: This is a work of fan fiction, written because the author has an abiding love for the works of Joanne K. Rowling, Garth Nix and Roald Dahl. Any characters, settings, places from the Harry Potter books and movies used in this work are the property of Joanne K. Rowling, and Warner Brothers; any concepts, items and settings from the Abhorsen books used in this work are the property of Garth Nix. Original characters, settings and concepts belong to the author of this work. The author will not receive any money or other remuneration for presenting the work on this archive site. The work is the intellectual property of the author, is available solely for the private enjoyment of readers at FanFictionNet, and may not be copied or redistributed by any means without the explicit written consent of the author.
All characters, places and events in this story are either the products of the relevant author's imagination or they are used entirely fictiously.
Summary: This is the sequel of my virtual penny dreadful "The Apprentice and the Necromancer".
In April 2003, Hermione is safely back at Hogwarts, but still refusing to touch a wand. She has finished her Potions apprenticeship without taking the final exams and is now working in the library, Muggle-style, helping Irma Pince with whatever needs to be done (and can be done without magic).
Severus is still Potions master. Additionally, he's giving Alina private lessons. Now in her fourth year at Hogwarts, Alina is accomplished enough in wandless, voiceless magic that she is able to keep up with her classmates in spite of her disabilities (being unable to speak and hear). However, now the time has come for her to truly learn the Dark Art of Necromancy and to read "The Book of the Dead".
Lois Petrel has married Ron Weasley. Together with their twin sons Kuno and Hugo they live in Fore Close, just off Diagon Alley and not far from the premises of Weasleys' Wizards' Wheezes. Winky the house-elf has been "loaned" to the family and is helping Lois cope with living as a Muggle in a magical world.
Harry - still blind, since he refuses to have his eyes removed in order to have magical eyes implanted - is working in the archives of the Ministry of Magic, together with Draco's ghost. With Kreacher's help he's also taking care of his son James-Hermes, while Ginny is abroad playing for the Holyhead Harpies.
Draco's son Scorpius is living with his mother, Hannah Abbott, in Diagon Alley near the Leaky Cauldron. During the holidays Hannah's fiancé, Neville Longbottom, is staying with them.
Will Hermione ever pick up a wand again? How was Severus changed in the Realm of Death? What will Lucius Malfoy do, when he finally discovers that Draco returned as a ghost? Why is Harry so adamant not to lose his blind eyes? Where are the last remaining Death Eaters? Can the rogue Necromancers of the Church that are still on the loose be captured? What is Cornelius Fudge up to? Who is sabotaging Weasleys' Wizards' Wheezes? Would you trust Pius Thicknesse to lead the negotiations of the new treaties with the Church? What is the new mission of the Little Knights?
Those and many other questions will (eventually) be answered in this story.
Once again I will be writing this on the fly, without a beta-reader, and in the format of a virtual penny dreadful, that is, in many short chapters of exactly one thousand words as counted by MS Word.
The story in fandom acronyms: HP, AU, Post-DH, EWE, Snape!Lives, HG/SS, X-over, H/C, romance, adventure, horror
Nothing Good Will Come of That
Hermione frowned at the door in front of her. As far as she remembered, there was no door here, least of all the door to the library. But there it was. A door. Right across from the entrance to the quarters she shared with her husband. And it looked just like the entrance to the library on the fourth floor.
While Hermione was still hesitating in the middle of the corridor, frowning, Crookshanks suffered from no such compunctions. He went straight for the door and started scratching at the age-darkened oak-wood.
Hermione's frown deepened.
Although she knew that Crookshanks would be perfectly behaved, she still wasn't sure how she felt about her cat being allowed to accompany her into the library. It was by special dispensation from Headmistress McGonagall and – to Hermione's shock and surprise – librarian Irma Pince, that Crooks was permitted to stay with her all the time, even when she was working in the Restricted Section.
While Hermione had long since abandoned the notion that cats didn't belong in beds, she used to have higher standards where libraries were concerned. And then there was the acute awareness that she was being singled out, that allowances were made for her … her handicaps. Her Gryffindor stubbornness rebelled against that kind of royal treatment. Yet somehow she couldn't bring herself to argue against it in this case. Because she was grateful to have Crookshanks with her. He had helped her out of more than one tight spot in the last months, when being wandless in a magic castle had ended with her – She swallowed hard. Locked in.
With the countless secret rooms and passages, that happened to everyone on a semi-regular basis. Even teachers got lost now and again. Of course they were not found in a nearly catatonic state when someone finally came to set them free. The magical signature of a teacher's wand would open nearly all doors, gates, entrances, exits and passageways in the castle.
Hermione scowled at the door.
The castle was trying to be nice. It was a long way to the fourth floor and the library, and the stack of books she had retrieved from her study was heavy when you couldn't float it with a spell. And it was only one of three stacks she had to return to the library.
She sighed deeply. Not that she wasn't grateful to the castle, but every time it went out of its way to make things easier for her, she wondered if she still belonged here at all. She bit down on her lip.
Think of Sunday, she told herself firmly. She'd dragged Severus outside and right up to the edge of the Forbidden Forest to look at the daffodil meadow she'd discovered only a few days ago. Joy and happiness. They had embraced and kissed, and she had sworn to him that they would be just fine.
One day, she amended with another sigh. Can't expect no miracles.
Somehow that qualification had been easier to bear outside, in Severus' arms, and in the bright spring sunshine. Today, weighed down by Tuesday doldrums and her books, being mollycoddled by the castle like the magically challenged person that she was, her optimism wavered.
Crookshanks meowed expectantly and scratched at the door again.
"Yes, Crooks, you're right. I'm coming, I'm coming." Hermione gripped the door handle. "Thank you, Hogwarts," she said softly. Chewing on her lower lip once more, she quickly glanced down the corridors to reassure herself that she was unobserved. Then she leant against the wood and pressed a quick kiss on it.
The door swung open and revealed a spiral staircase. As soon as she set foot on the first step, it began to move, slowly rising higher and higher, just like the staircase that led to the office of the Headmistress. Hermione smiled. This was certainly much more convenient than braving the volatile staircases at the centre of Hogwarts. They had a mind of their own, a nasty sense of humour, and they didn't seem to care much for the plights of the new wandless inhabitant of the castle.
Hermione shifted the weight of the books in her arms, and mentally reviewed her to-do-list for the day. First, return the books she'd taken down to her quarters over the weekend. Second, check the ledger with the fines. Third, continue dusting the shelves in the Restricted Section …
In a pretty, half-timbered townhouse in Fore Close, Ron Weasley put down the Daily Prophet with a disgusted THWAP!
Lois looked up from her task of spooning banana mush into Kuno's mouth. She tried to ignore the fact that Winky was already done with Hugo and that neither boy nor house-elf looked any worse for wear – while Kuno's enthusiasm for his food had left traces of mush spread over his face, his bib, and his mother's blouse.
"Can you believe it?" Ron asked, the tips of his ears reddening with outrage. "Cornelius Fudge is running for president of the EMU! As if he didn't cause enough harm as Chairman of the OHMM."
"Hmm?" Lois asked, distracted by Kuno's waving little fists. At the last moment she managed to snatch the bowl away from him. "Oh, all right," she groaned. "Winky, would you take over, please?"
The house-elf beamed. A snap of her fingers and both Lois and her son were clean. Winky picked up the spoon and Kuno squealed merrily.
Lois shook her head and turned to Ron. "What's up with the European Magical Union?" she asked. "And that Fudge, isn't he the chairman of the Office for Harmonious Magical Markets who was giving you and George so much trouble last year?"
Ron growled deep in his throat and the figures in the wizarding photograph on the first page of the Daily Prophet recoiled with fear.
"Exactly. And now that git is running for President!" Ron scowled at the paper. "Mark my words," he announced, sounding just like his father. "Nothing good will come of that."
A/N: Here we go again! Just one chapter for starters, because I'm still plotting ... but I thought some of you would appreciate this.