A Kiss Can Change The World
As Harry sat in the great hall while Minerva presented Cedric, Fleur and Victor with their Tri-Wizard Trophies and a thousand galleons each he couldn't help but think how different things would have been if he didn't kiss the extremely beautiful, extremely pregnant witch who was sitting by his side.
Hogwarts had confirmed that she had indeed placed a shield around her heirs to protect them from the powerful magic being poured into Hermione, unfortunately the castle had drained itself so much that it wasn't able to remove the protection after the transfer and even now they had decided not to take the risk.
Hermione was glowing, pregnancy really suited her and Harry thought he had never seen a more beautiful sight than his pregnant wife. Their life had settled down since discovering the babies were moving and growing, everything else would just have to wait till they were born.
Shifting his gaze to look around the hall made Harry smile as he noticed every table had a mixture of houses with the Beauxbatons and Durmstrang students sprinkled around as well, the policy of inclusion rather than exclusion was working better than they could ever have hoped and was spreading through the rest of the wizarding world. It was the presence of Carole and Josh Burns that pleased him the most, his thoughts wandering back to Easter on the island.
"Excuse me, may I have a word in private please?" Robert Burns asked Harry and Hermione while his wife waited nervously for a reply, something was clearly bothering them.
The four retreated to a quiet sitting room and sat while the Potters waited to find out what was troubling the couple.
Robert gathered his courage and spoke, "over the last few days we have watched carefully as both Carol and Josh have blossomed into the fine young people that we knew was in there, and while I will admit being on this beautiful island has helped I'm more inclined to credit the company they've been keeping for the changes. I have never seen so many kids who all look out for one another, it's very subtle but you can see it if you look close enough, and they accepted all of our children without a moments hesitation. I don't want them to lose what they've found here and would like to enquire on the possibilities of Carol and Josh attending Hogwarts."
Harry and Hermione weren't sure what the Burns parents were going to say but this had shocked them, though when the facts were presented it seemed logical except for the fact that logical and magical rarely fitted in the same sentence.
Ever since Hogwarts had used Ginny to pass magic on to her parents, their bond had reached the stage that allowed them to talk to each other over it, without thoughts leaking out. Hermione concentrated on Ginny then asked her to bring Carol, Josh and Greg into the room.
"There's a reason why we can't grant your request in full but I have a proposal that might interest you both and the kids but if we wait a minute we can all discuss the solution together." Harry had hardly finished speaking when they entered the room.
When everyone was sitting Hermione attempted to explain, "the reason that Carol and Josh could not attend Hogwarts is because it's a school for the gifted, and this gift is something that you have to be born with, it's called magic!" Harry conjured roses for Mrs Burns and Carol who both couldn't believe their eyes as the roses slowly floated into their laps. "Ginny and I are witches while Harry and Greg are wizards and Hogwarts is where we learn to control our magic."
Carol looked towards Greg who shyly nodded, "I'm not in the same league as Harry here but that's ok as very few are, and they all seem to have Potter as a last name."
"Apart for my Neville." Ginny smilingly corrected.
"Is that how Carol was cured?" Robert asked.
"Yes," answered Harry, "we are slowly trying to integrate our world with the non-magical, I was raised in your world and Hermione's parents are both non-magical dentists. With this in mind I would like to invite Josh and Carol to Hogwarts from a Friday evening to Sunday evening, they would work in the non-magical annex on a Saturday and Sunday afternoons. We have social events every weekend that they would be welcome to attend and of course they would be paid for their work. Ginny and Amanda run a mini mall in the annex and they would be working and staying with them. All we ask is that this remains a secret, you can't tell anyone about magic unless they already know."
"What happens if we tell anyone?" a clearly worried Robert asked.
Hermione gave a reassuring smile, "we would perform a memory charm that would have you forget about magic, at our wedding Tina was amongst the non-magical guests hurt but treated at a magical hospital. I actually spoke to her there and found out about Carol's cancer but she has had her memory modified to forget about magic, the alternative of not treating her and leaving Tina scarred for life just never was part of the equation."
Harry continued, "we need to remain secret or we would be expected to use magic to solve the worlds problems and that's beyond even us – though we are trying."
Carol was still looking at Greg, "we're not allowed to tell anyone about magic, it's one of our strictest laws, but I'm still the same guy. If this bothers you we can do a memory charm, you will forget all about magic and we can be friends but we can't progress from that as I am a wizard and it's not something I could give up. Thanks to Harry we have phones and email now so could still stay in touch."
Josh queried, "what did you use before phones and email?"
Greg actually looked embarrassed, "we used to tie messages to owls legs."
Josh was laughing until he realised Greg was serious, "cool, slow and quaint but cool."
Carol asked a question, which eased Greg's fears somewhat, at least she wasn't running out the room screaming. Greg had grown quite fond of the girl and it never even crossed his mind that she wasn't a witch, she was a beautiful girl who was fun to be around and that was all that mattered.
"Wouldn't we spend most of the weekend travelling up and down to Scotland?" she asked.
Harry was grinning as he called for Dobby, who actually entered through the door. "Dobby could you lose the glamour please?" This brought the reality of magic home to the Burns family a lot more forcefully than the roses.
"Sir Dobby is an elf, and yes the Queen knew that before the ceremony as Dobby and Winky have both been to the Palace. Dobby could you please take Carol for a quick visit to Hogwarts?" asked Harry.
It was an astonished Carol who appeared back less than five minutes later and could only nod her head in wonder when Harry asked if that answered her question.
"You don't have to make a decision today, in fact now that you know about magic you are welcome to stay for the other week of the holidays after mum and dad's guests leave, we can just transport you directly home. We will just make James sleep and he'll think he slept the whole way home." Said Hermione.
"Making James sleep might be just too tall an order," said Robert who was immediately put to sleep by Ginny.
"Oh I so wish I could do magic!" This was spoken with such longing by Robert's wife that everybody just had to laugh.
Harry and Hermione lay cuddling in their suite at Potter Manor glad that tonight was over but not looking forward to tomorrow. The Prophet would be running an interview with them and then there was Sirius and Rose's engagement party tomorrow night. Narcissa kept going on at them to attend functions or hold a ball but they just weren't interested in that type of lifestyle, they much preferred their island and the company of friends rather than 'social suck-ups' as Hermione had christened them.
Sirius had actually relieved the pressure by having a massive engagement party in Potter Manor to re-introduce Lord Black back into wizarding society. This meant that the Potter's could attend as guests and leave early, citing Hermione's current heavily pregnant state as an excuse. Harry and Hermione reckoned an hour was minimum but ninety minutes would be the maximum time they could spend there listening to 'you really must do this' or 'someone is dying to meet them'.
The interview appearing in the Prophet tomorrow should cause quite a stir as well. A Wizengamot member named Tim Sharp had put forward a proposal that Stag Industries was getting to large and powerful, it should be broken up into smaller pieces and sold for the good of the wizarding world, and Tim Sharp who was looking for a piece of the company or to be offered gold to drop or amend his proposal.
He obviously must have had his head up his arse for the last eight months if he thought the Potters would try and pay him off, nothing less than total ruination of the man was acceptable.
The Potters had stated in their interview that they would never sell any of their interests, instead they would close every Stag Industries business in Britain and move it abroad, and this also included Hogwarts. They promised not one employee would lose their job as they would be relocated, re-housed and reimbursed for any expenses endured in this process.
The Potters only request was that a decision be reached quickly to allow families time to find alternative schooling for their children and give the Potters a chance to settle in their new country before their babies were born.
A related article by Gringotts bank highlighting the devastating effect this would have on the wizarding economy followed, it made grim reading. Not only would they lose the tax revenue from the employees, but also those same people would then be spending their wages in a country other than Britain. There would be no Stag Industries businesses buying raw materials in the country either, the development of a washing machine, CD player and microwave oven for the magical world were only some of the projects that would be relocated, not to mention the biggest potion producer in the country.
Ever since the military visited Hogwarts there began a love affair between pureblood wizards and ready meals, and even though they could heat them using magic they apparently preferred that 'authentic microwave taste' – wizards were nuts!
Gringotts were at pains to emphasise that the relocation of Stag Industries would not affect the bank, they were still the company's bankers and should Stag decide on a country that didn't have a branch of Gringotts, one would be opened.
There was also a warning from St Mungo's that without the support of Stag Industries, who paid millions to buy the elves their freedom and now employed them, providing workers to the hospital at no cost, they would be serious consequences to the provision of healthcare in the magical community.
The Prophet then informed their readers that, as Stag Industries owned the newspaper, they would have to find something else to read in the morning. They were at pains to point out that editorial control was completely independent with the only proviso that anything printed must be the truth.
Rose Parkinson then preceded to bludger the point's home with her editorial,
The company motto 'for the benefit of all' is nowhere more apparent than in the refurbishment of Hogwarts, which was totally financed by Stag Industries. It will actually cost parents LESS to send their children, as they are no longer required to purchase books, brooms, potion ingredients, cauldrons, or telescopes as the school will supply all.
Stag Industries have spent a fortune investing in the witches and wizards of tomorrow and instead of being incredibly grateful once again our government is trying to line it's own members pockets rather than what's best for our world.
A few small minded and greedy people are looking enviously at some of the companies more profitable ventures without looking at the bigger picture, the company would be unable to subsidise students who are now attending the best magical school in the world if their gold producing businesses were stripped away.
This journalist is honoured to work for such a reputable company, which holds it's employees in such high esteem, and more delighted than I can express that if the company leaves Britain I will be going with them. My only worry is what we would leave behind as I foresee many like-minded individuals following the Potters out off Britain leaving a tin-pot dictatorship with nothing to dictate over.
The Prophet produced mass panic in the Ministry and an emergency meeting of the Wizengamot was called for that afternoon, and a barrage of owls bombarded the ministry for the remainder of the day.
Harry and Hermione were starting to reconsider their earlier agreement; neither thought they could stick the party for an hour with Harry even taking the extreme measure of dancing with his wife to avoid all the people desperate to disassociate themselves from Tim Sharp. The afore mentioned former member of the Wizengamot was currently having all his affairs investigated by the Ministry, Wizengamot and Gringotts, if he was dirty he was going down.
The Ministry and Wizengamot were falling over themselves to appease the Potters; Stag Industries had quietly made itself indispensable to the British wizarding world with more power than the establishment. This latest attempted attack on the Potters had proved this without a shadow of a doubt, it also confirmed that the Potters had no interest in running Britain and would rather up-stakes and leave than take on that job.
While the Ministry dithered, the Wizengamot argued amongst itself, Stag had being making decisions and slowly but surely changing their world. Both Harry and Hermione were pretty sure what the outcome of the Prophet articles would be; a pre-emptive strike was always better than a war and Hogwarts would never forgive them if they left now.
Harry and Hermione were ready to leave now, apologising to a grinning Sirius and Rose they headed back to their suite and immediately popped to the island. It was still afternoon so they got changed and strolled down to the beach, Harry was currently rubbing sun tan lotion onto Hermione and thinking life didn't get any better than this, the sight of his pregnant wife in a transfigured bikini instantly banished his bad mood and the realisation that they had a week to themselves before Hogwarts finished cemented a smile onto his face.
The Lily Potter clinic was not used to screams reverberating along the corridors but with two pregnant women currently in the final stages of labour some noise was understandable and expected. Hermione's water had broken and as they were making arrangements to pop to the clinic, the triplet's uncle decided it was time for him to make an appearance as well. Emma was currently informing her husband, rather vocally, that any more Granger children would have to be carried by him in language that would make a sailor blush, she'd taken to the role of seafarer rather well.
Poppy was looking after the Potters while Ewan Abercrombie dealt with the Grangers, Poppy was concerned as the shield was still blocking her scans but Hermione seemed to be coping well, but having a husband who could not only share power but pain was definitely a boon.
Poppy was effectively a spectator as, with no information, she was relying on the magic of Hogwarts and the Potters to ensure that things went smoothly. Triplets were almost unknown in the wizarding world so information was hard to come by, she read non-magical books but in most cases they would end up with a caesarean section, an option she prayed they wouldn't need here.
Hermione and Harry were probably the calmest people in the clinic, especially considering those in the rapidly filling waiting room. Both had been through too much for anything to go wrong now, they suspected their magic would inform them if anything was wrong with the babies and at the moment it was almost singing a song that Fawkes would recognise. Since bonding with Harry, Hermione had learned to trust her instincts, and just because some book said something was impossible didn't make it so. Everything she'd ever read told her she should be worried but their magic was telling a different story, it had started celebrating and the babies weren't even here yet.
James Daniel Potter was born with so little trauma that his sister, Lily Ginny Potter turned up a mere twelve minutes later. Mandy Emma Potter completed the golden trio, as the sound of babies crying was a welcome relief to Emma's yells as Dominic John Granger was born in between the Potter girls.
It was a very tired but elated Hermione who watched as Ginny and Winky had tears in their eyes while holding her daughters while Harry held his son with wonder, her eyes closed for a deserved sleep after her father introduced her new brother, Dominic to her.
In the waiting room Tonks and Rose were having to comfort two crying marauders, the realisation that the last time they had done this was for Harry's birth hit both men hard, that James and Lily weren't here to see the proudest moment in their son's life was just too much for these strong men and the tears they had held since the night of their murder flowed freely. Both women knew why their men were crying and it just made Tonks and Rose love them more, they glanced at each other with the same thought – these were keepers who would make good husbands and even better fathers.
Petunia was also crying watching Harry as he sat with a daughter cradled in each arm, Ginny brought James over for her to hold, it had been many years since she had held a baby and the feelings all came flooding back. What her life had been like before it was ruined by two insane wizards, one had murdered her sister while the other had cast spells on her mind. Yet the wonderful young man she was proud to call her nephew had saved them all. Dudley was learning just from being around Harry and his friends and the therapy was going splendidly, so much so they were looking at enrolling him into a school in America, with Harry meeting the bills and providing them with a house as well, he really was amazing and matched only by his beautiful wife. These babies had some act to follow.
They all stayed at Potter Manor for the two weeks before Hogwarts opened as the wizarding world went crazy over the birth of the triplets, the Potters eventually allowed a family picture to be printed in the Prophet. They hated the idea of a formal posed shot so the picture that appeared had Harry, Hermione and Ginny all sitting on the carpet while holding the babies with Dobby and Winky kneeling by their side. The edition of the Prophet with the front-page picture of the eight Potters completely sold out despite three reprints.
The first freelance photographer caught skulking in the bushes of the Manor was delighted when the Aurors carted him away, the glares directed in his direction from the elves would terrify a braver man than him. The repercussions were that any media purchasing unauthorised pictures of the Potter children were warned they would be prosecuted to the full extent of the law and banned from ever receiving any authorised material again. Prince Charles had explained what a luxury it was for them to have a holiday without paparazzi buzzing around like bees round honey, Harry agreed they were right B's and now couldn't wait for the first of September to get back to their sanctuary. They swore their children would not grow up splattered over any publication that wanted to sell more copies and a firm of lawyers were already monitoring the situation.
Hermione sat in the great hall of Hogwarts and witnessed history being made as the first of six goblins to attend the school was sorted into Ravenclaw. Harry was explaining what was happening to an attentive Lily who was gurgling away at the sound of her father's voice. Harry always seemed to have at least one of their children in his arms and she had never seen him happier. She was currently holding Mandy while James was asleep in Winky's arms. Winky was giving Dobby that look recognised by females of any species, I want my own one of these! To his eternal credit Dobby looked in complete agreement with that sentiment.
The four babies were all going to be in one big nursery room that was between theirs and their parents, though with elves clamouring to assist with the babies at every turn Hermione and Emma usually only had to feed their children, the elves had the nappies changed almost before they made it out of bed.
She once again watched her husband and reflected on the changes the last year had brought about, from his name coming out of that goblet and the 'Potter Stinks' badges to becoming the man sitting beside her was quite a journey and she wouldn't have missed it for anything. To think it all started with a kiss in a corridor here, she smiled to herself and wondered if one day there would be a plaque placed on the wall – on this spot a kiss was enjoyed and the world would never be the same again!
Minerva smiled towards the Potters as she moved forward to address the students, all Harry could think of was that it wouldn't be long till he could go home with his family – his life long dreams had all come true.
A/N This is the first story I have ever written, thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed it.
A special thanks to all those who took the time to review – they really helped keep me writing.
My latest story 'Knowledge is Power' can also be found on this site