The Dentists' Daughter
Old Crow - Scribe
Summary – Dan and Emma Granger's peaceful life is rocked by a visitor claiming that there is a magical world. More shocking, the visitor wants their only daughter to become a part of that world! What would responsible parents do? The story is about Hermione's introduction to the world of magic as seen from her parents' PoV.
Ships – There are several ships in this story. However, it is primarily a story about the Grangers.
Book compliancy - The majority of the story takes place before Harry Potter and his friends attend school. JKR never mentioned any of this, but she should have. This is a story that I always thought should be told.
Please note – Other than a brief mention, there are no Weasley students in this story. As such, I am unable to plot out any cruel… (Forget that I mentioned that, I just had an idea.)
Disclaimer - JKR's sandbox, not mine. I'm still having fun pushing some of the piles around a bit and rearranging them.
Wizarding etiquette – This and my other fanfiction stories are written strictly on a hobby basis. I make no claim that it is error free, nor do I aspire to anything other than providing the occasional chuckle. If you enjoy my little stories and are willing to accept the quality level, and quirks, please read on and leave a review when you are finished. If you can't accept the occasional typo or choose to nit-pick sentence structure based on new information that your parents just paid your college to drill into you, please find a different story.
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Introduction - The old scribe looked down at the high plains and foothills below him. There was something about seeing the world from 8,000 feet that was clarifying. Taking a pint of his favorite beverage from his saddlebag, he sat on a smooth rock and thought about the reports that he'd written and the thousands of others that he'd seen. Many of them were similar, as the various scribes must have witnessed the same events.
After finishing his beverage, and wishing that it had been butterbeer instead, Crow hit upon something that had been niggling at him for years. Much had been reported about the Dursleys and the fact that they reacted with disgust when Harry had been 'landed on their doorstep' uninvited. Arguably, the infant represented a very real danger to their lives. In fact, in many of the reports that he'd read, the darkness had claimed them before Dudley even finished Smeltings. By most accounts, their ending had been excruciating and violent.
Yes, they treated the boy badly, but they didn't ask for him. Potter's parents never would have consented for their little boy to go to her sister. Petunia knew of the Potters' world and its perils. It was easily within her right to say 'no thanks' but Dumbledore never gave her that choice.
While brushing the dust off of his boot, Crow thought about the way that the way that another young couple reacted when they were told about the world of magic. Like the Dursleys, they were presented with a choice. All these years later, the old scribe wondered if, as responsible parents, they had made the right decisions.
The events reported here took place before those that were reported in Tom and Harry, No Thanks, or Letters and Lunches. Realizing that he had work to do, Crow repacked his belongings, got on his steel horse and began to recall the details as he rode on his way.
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Part 1 – The Visit
Saturday - 5 May 1990
Emma Granger sat at her kitchen table looking out into her spacious back yard. She was very worried about her young daughter. Hermione had awoken at 3AM to find that all of the furniture in her bedroom had mysteriously been rearranged! Emma and her husband Dan had spent the better part of an hour calming their hysterical daughter down and she had finally gone to sleep at 5AM. What concerned Emma the most was that the same phenomena had previously occurred several times in the last year.
It was all that Emma could do not to think of the scary movie from the early seventies about the young girl nearly Hermione's age that had been possessed. Dan questioned if their daughter may have some abilities in telekinesis, but their local library didn't have a lot of material on the subject.
No one would say that Hermione, age ten, had enjoyed a happy childhood. Like her mother, she displayed extraordinarily intelligence. Like Emma's father, Hermione displayed an excessive admiration for authority and rules. While that was a very positive trait in a career military man, it did nothing to enhance the social standing of a little girl.
Since starting school, Hermione had no close friends. To compensate, the young girl threw herself into her schoolwork and books. Her attempts to demonstrate her exploding level of knowledge to her teachers by frantically raising her hand after each question in class only caused her classmates to further distance themselves from her. While her kinder classmates said nothing, the less tolerant ones frequently resorted to name-calling.
In the past year, the prettier girls in her class had grown ever more confident in their social standing, and the verbal attacks that they inflicted on the bucktooth girl with flyaway hair grew sharper and meaner. There were many occasions when little Hermione had come home with a tear stained face.
Hermione's only real friends were her parents. To help round out the sharp edges, Emma had insisted that her daughter at least try some of the sport activities that the primary school offered, but after an unbroken string of bad experiences, had acquiesced.
… -- …
Born Emma Young to a man who would eventually become a one star general in the British military, Emma met the love of her life in dental school. Naturally the general disliked the young student with his scruffy looks and poorer clothing immediately. The son of a deliveryman, Dan Granger barely eked his way through university and dental school with a combination of partial ROTC scholarships, loans, and part time work.
On 7 May 1977 Dan and Emma were married despite receiving no blessing from the general. They finished dental school together a few weeks later.
Borrowing every shilling that they could sign for; the two set up a small dental clinic in Crawley, some 30 miles south of London. Their life was a struggle to be sure, but they both worked hard and as the months passed, one by one, they slowly paid off their school loans.
In February of 1979, Emma announced that she was pregnant. Dan was overjoyed, but worried that Emma was obviously having a difficult pregnancy. As the months passed, they truly questioned the safety issues of attempting to have additional children in the future.
Early in the morning of the nineteenth of September, Hermione Jean was born in the midst of a power failure within the hospital.
In early August of the next year, the young family had just moved into their home on Cobbles Crescent in Crawley. Baby Hermione celebrated her first birthday in her very own bedroom.
… -- …
Little Hermione quickly became the center of the young couple's life. She could talk long before she could walk, and seemed to love when her mum or dad read her stories. Before she was four, she was naming words aloud as Emma would read to her.
Two months after she was four, Dan and his friend Mike walked into the family room only to find his little girl sitting by herself reading an illustrated children's version of The Hobbit. They smiled as they watched the little girl stare at the words as she sounded them out.
Mike was certain that she was mostly looking at the illustrations until the little girl inquired, "Daddy, what's a goblin?"
… -- …
Their comfortable little world shattered on the seventh of April, 1982. Dan was called up for temporary duty on the HMS Broadsword. The Broadsword and many type 22 and 42 frigates like her had been called to war - codenamed Operation Corporate. Their mission was to support and defend the aircraft carriers that were steaming their way to the Falkland Islands at the southernmost point of South America. As such, in return for his ROTC scholarships, Dan's obligation was to report for duty if called.
With 24 hours notice, Dan boarded a transport plane to meet up with his ship, which was currently in Gibraltar for three days for resupply.
Emma and their little girl Hermione gave her father a tearful hug as he left, each praying that they would soon be reunited. She would run their dental practice while her mother Jean, helped out at the front desk.
… -- …
Life aboard the Broadsword did not agree with Dan who, in all honesty, never expected to be called up for active duty. Within a week, he was away from his little family and comfortable life, serving as an assistant ship surgeon aboard a 430-foot ship that felt cramped with all of the supplies and marines that it had taken on. Primarily armed with a sea wolf anti-aircraft missile system, the ship's mission was to protect the floating airfields against air attack. The fleet of twenty ships made their way toward the Falkland Islands to accomplish what diplomacy had failed to achieve.
The 250 or so officers and crewmembers aboard Broadsword each had their respective jobs to do, were well trained and were prepared for war. Some were officers, some mechanics, some were trained to operate the anti-submarine torpedoes, helicopters, or the Sea Wolf antiaircraft system. Some made or served the meals while others kept the ship clean. Also aboard was a compliment of marines, who would eventually go ashore and fight on the islands. Their backgrounds were all different, but at the same time, they had a common goal. All in all, it was a happy ship.
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5 May 1982
Emma was shocked and frightened when she read that two Argentinean A4 jets armed with the French made M39 Exocet missiles had mortally damaged the HMS Sheffield. The reality hit her that if a 500 million pound sterling ship could be sunk by a 250 thousand pound missile, her husband could be killed by a 50 pence bullet.
A few weeks later, she was again terrified when she read that the ship that Dan was serving on had been hit by 30MM cannon fire, and another ship in their little convoy, the Antelope had been sunk.
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25 May 1982
Dan had just finished his shift and was ready to hit the sack when the call "battle stations" came. Amid the sirens and bells he could hear the flight of A4 jets approaching. Moments later, the ship was rocked as a bomb hit the side of ship.
Miraculously, it didn't explode, rather crashed through the ship and came out through the upper deck taking the front section of one of the ship's helicopters with it before falling into the ocean! One of Dan's shipmates had been feet away from the area where the bomb had entered and had lost his hand in the process. Dan worked feverously to stop the flow of bleeding and save his friend's life. He tore something in his shoulder as he dragged his shipmate away from the flaming wreckage, but got the young marine to safety.
Seconds earlier, the Broadsword's sister ship, Coventry was hit in a mighty explosion. Within minutes the call had come to abandon ship. Immediately after the attack, rescue helicopters began arriving carrying a total of 170 survivors, most of whom had been picked up from rafts or swimming in the frigid Antarctic waters. Quite a few of the sailors were wounded, Dan and the rest of the medical crew worked at a frantic pace, saving as many lives as they could. Many were injected with morphine while their injuries were treated. Most would heal, but some would never be the same.
After they were done, Dan and the others were permitted to examine the damage to the ship. There was a huge hole in the side of the unarmored frigate! Fortunately, it was above the waterline.
That evening, Dan visited his marine friend who had lost his hand and a good part of his arm. He opened his eyes and looked at the man who had saved his life and tried to whisper something through his parched lips. Dan held a paper cup filled with a tot of rum in it. With the chief doctor's approval, Dan moistened the Marine's lips with a few drops of rum from his finger. The young marine's face relaxed into a smile and he fell asleep again.
… -- …
Emma's world was shattered when she read that the Broadsword had been hit by a bomb and the ship next to it had sunk. It hadn't initially been reported that the bomb hadn't exploded. She had no way of knowing if her husband was alive, wounded, missing or worse. She spent yet another sleepless night desperately holding their little girl, praying for Dan's safety.
The next day at noon, the ministry of defense contacted her and all of the members of the crew, letting her know that in her husband's case, he was okay.
Four months later, Dan was released from active duty, peace having been restored. His time in the military hadn't been long, but due to the action that he and the rest of his shipmates had seen, was changed man. He had learned that even though he was afraid, he could stare death in the face and still do his job.
… -- …
Dan had spent the better part of the last month looking up telekinesis on various websites. By the time he sorted through the redundancy, the "evidence" usually came down to two "experiments" – holding a pinwheel and making the blades spin without blowing on it and rotating a straw placed on the top of a pop bottle.
The counter claims were logical enough. In the case of the pinwheel, the heat from the person's hands could have been sufficient to make the wheel slowly spin, as could air currents from within a room.
From what he read, nothing that could be replicated came anywhere near approaching moving dressers, chair and nightstands. In his discussions with Emma, Dan never mentioned the exorcism movie that they'd seen a few fears back or the film about the young girl in the prom dress. He simply didn't want to frighten Emma or his little girl.
He kept searching the Internet for reasonable explanations for psychic phenomena, but failed to find satisfactory answers.
… -- …
22 September 1990
On Saturday, a minute or so after nine in the morning, Emma went to the door to see who was knocking. Opening the door, she saw a prim woman standing there, wearing a somewhat out of date, conservative black dress. She wore rimless rectangle spectacles with slate grey earpieces and her hair was wrapped into the tightest bun that Emma had seen in years. Smiling, she said to the woman, "Good morning. May I help you?"
"Good morning Dr. Granger. My name is Professor Minerva McGonagall from the Hogwarts school. I came to see you about offering your daughter, Hermione a place in our school for the next term. May I come in?"
"Certainly," replied Emma, trying to think if she'd heard of the school before. She quickly decided that she hadn't. "Hermione and my husband Dan are out back. Should I get them?"
"They'll be back in a moment," replied McGonagall handing Emma a thick envelope. "Hogwarts is the best school of its kind in Britain. We believe that your daughter would thrive there and have an outstanding experience."
Emma had heard a similar pitch a week before from Davison secondary school. A part of her wanted to keep Hermione at home, since she made friends so infrequently, yet another part of her knew that a boarding school experience would most likely provide her the social opportunities that she would need to become a well rounded young woman.
"How many students are there?" asked Emma who hadn't yet glanced at the information that McGonagall had handed her.
"In total there are 322 young men and women enrolled this year. Typically there are forty to fifty new students each year. We rarely accept transfer students and the vast majority of the students who start at Hogwarts finish."
"What fields of study would Hermione be prepared for? She has indicated an interest in going onto Kings College to study medicine."
"Perhaps you should look at the letter, Hermione," said Minerva taking an envelope from her pocket and handing it to the young girl.
Hermione stretched out her hand to take the yellowish envelope, addressed in emerald green to Miss. H. Granger, 18 Cobbles Crescent, Crawley. She carefully examined the red seal on the back of the envelope, glanced at the steely-eyed professor for a moment and opened the envelope. She pulled out the letter and read:
HOGWARTS SCHOOL of WITCHCRAFT and WIZARDRY
Headmaster: ALBUS DUMBLEDORE
(Order of Merlin, First Class, Grand Sorcerer, Chief. Warlock, Supreme
Mugwump, International Confederation of Wizards)
Dear Miss Granger,
We are pleased to inform you that you have been accepted at Hogwarts
School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Please find enclosed a list of all
necessary books and equipment.
Term begins on 1 September. We await your owl by no later than 31 July.
In the fifteen seconds that it took Hermione to read the envelope, her life suddenly made sense. She reread the envelope, looked at Minerva and nodded. All of the odd things that she had done, either consciously or unconsciously, suddenly fell into place. She looked at the Professor and said, "There are more like me?"
McGonagall replied, "There are thousands who share your abilities in Britain alone. Doctor and Doctor Granger, perhaps you could take a look at your daughter's offer letter, then we can discuss the school; in more detail."
Emma's nice orderly world came crashing down as she looked at the letterhead. Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry Established 975AD. She put the letter down without reading the rest.
"What kind of joke is this? Who are you?"
"I assure you Dr. Granger, this is no joke. Your daughter has magical abilities."
Initially insulted at the claim, Emma nearly shouted, "Magical abilities! … Are you trying to tell us that our daughter is a, a…"
In as perfectly calm voice, McGonagall finished Emma's unspoken sentence for her. "A witch? Yes. There's no doubt about it. If you would allow me two minutes, I'll demonstrate the existence of magic and then answer any questions that you might have. May I?"
Dan held the palm of his hand out and said, "Please?"
Minerva took out her wand and carefully levitated the coffee table in front of them. When the table was about at eye level, she gave her wand a tiny flick and the table slowly spun around anti-clock ways. After it had made two revolutions, McGonagall gave her wand another flick and carefully caused the table to lower itself back down to the floor without having spilled the teacups!
"May I continue?"
Dan and Emma sat, silenced by the demonstration that they were seeing and just nodded.
Minerva pointed to the London Times that was on the table and said, "Watch closely." She pointed her wand at the paper and a moment later a four-foot poplar tree was standing in their living room, apparently growing on top of the end table!
Dan put his arm out to touch the tree, looked at McGonagall and asked, "May I?"
She nodded, "Of course."
He reached over, felt one of the branches, snapped it off and handed it to Emma who felt it in her hand before handing it back to Dan.
Minerva said, "If you would, Dr. Granger, please set the branch back on the table."
Awestruck, he did as she asked. The old woman gave her wand a tint flick, said, "Repairo," and the branch reattached itself. Emma stood up to examine the branch that she had held in her hand a moment before saw that it was perfectly attached to the little tree and sat down again. A moment later, McGonagall said a few other words, flicked the wand, and the tree disappeared, leaving the London Times.
"Amazing," said Dan.
"Magic," replied McGonagall. "If you would please, step out into the back garden with me."
Whether to simply amuse the old crone or to see what she would do next, they all followed her out to the back of their home. The old woman took out a quill and asked, "Have you ever been to Brighton?"
Emma glanced at her watch and replied, "Of course. Why do you ask?"
McGonagall replied, "Please touch this quill for a moment." They all complied; not having an idea what the old woman was going to do next. McGonagall told Hermione, "Please say your full name, Miss Granger."
Hermione looked at her mum for a moment and in a weak voice replied, "Hermione Jean Granger."
A moment later, the four of them found themselves standing inside one of the shade tents along Brighton beach. "Please come with me," said the old woman. Half terrified, half enchanted, they complied with her request.
They walked along the beach for a minute. Hermione and Emma bent down to collect several shells and dipped their feet into the cool water. A few minutes later she led them back to the changing tent, had them touch another quill and activated it by having Hermione say "Pumpkin." A moment later they were standing in their back garden!
"Amazing. Are you saying that with some classes in witchery our daughter will be able to do things like that?" asked Dan who was stumbling over the words. Emma gave him "the look," and he said, "Professor, would you excuse us for a moment?"
They stepped back into their kitchen for a moment. Emma had a very panicked look on her face. "What just happened?" she demanded. "One minute we were sitting here, the next we were at the ocean, the next we're back at our home." She squeezed the sand and shell that she had scooped up. The flakes and bits of grit felt real in her hand. She glanced at her watch again. It was six minutes later than when she had looked at it the first time. Brighton beach was almost a hundred miles south of their home in Crawley. None of this made sense.
Dan thought for a moment. If what this woman had shown them was real, and not some sick stunt, it was as if men from outer space had landed in their back garden and offered their daughter a ticket to explore the galaxy with them! He enjoyed his business and loved Em, but it was as if the old woman was offering to show Hermione a completely different world from the one that they lived in.
… -- …
Out in the back, the clarity of her explanation and the demonstration had a profoundly calming effect on the eleven-year-old girl. Everything made sense. The Professor could levitate furniture too, except she could do it when she wanted to and had a… a magic wand to help her. Of course. There must be schools to teach these things, and she was offering me a place to go there with other kids who were… just like me. A smile crept onto her face.
… -- …
Emma noticed the look on Hermione's face, glanced at her best friend, who nodded and said, "Let's go back in and hear the woman out."
They walked back into the house. McGonagall was sitting on the chair by the table again.
Emma spoke first saying, "We obviously have a number of questions for you, Professor."
McGonagall smiled and replied, "Right. Ask away, then." Her Scottish burr seemed to fit her well.
Emma started asking, "How do you know that our daughter can learn those things?"
With no more surprise than if she had been asked the time of day, McGonagall replied, "Her name was added to the list of magical beings when she was born. She has performed accidental magic on several occasions." She looked at the bushy haired young girl, who nodded.
Emma was about to question, Why now, but became distracted by Dan's question.
Dan asked, "What makes a person magical?"
Over the years, Minerva had heard similar questions dozens of times. With perfect confidence, she replied, "Their ability to manipulate energy and matter through thought processes. It's a gift that some people are born with. It typically runs in families, but infrequently manifests itself in a person whose parents have no such abilities."
Dan asked, "Where is this school?"
"Hogwarts castle is located in the Scottish highlands. Inverness is the closest large city." She knew that it would do no good to mention Hogsmeade.
Not certain what to expect, Emma asked, "Do we have a choice in the matter?"
Somewhat surprised by the question, Minerva replied, "Of course you do. Receiving a magical education is entirely an eligible individual's decision." She didn't go into the aspect of what would happen if their daughter chose not to attend. The ministry took care of obliviations of muggleborns who refused their invitations shortly after their twelfth birthday and subsequent invitation to a lesser school of magic.
Dan inquired, "What would she learn?"
"She would learn techniques and skills to control her magical energy. The first year curriculum consists of learning the basics of charms, potions, the history of magic, defense against the dark arts and the topic that I teach, transfiguration. Charms includes levitation such as I did with your table. Potions class is somewhat similar to chemistry except with the inclusion of magical elements. The history of magic provides a historical perspective on the magical culture within Britain and the continent."
Dan nodded, not really understanding what the woman was saying.
"Defense is a practical applications class to ensure that your child learns the skills to remain safe within the magical world." Seeing their acceptance, she continued saying "Transfiguration is the science of turning one object into another through the application of mental energy as when I turned your London Times into a small tree. In the later years the upperclassmen have additional electives to match their interests and desired career objectives."
Emma asked, "What about the rest of her education?"
"There is advanced study based on her chosen career field, healing by example is another three years of study and internship."
"What career opportunities are there?"
"Your daughter's magical options are as wide and varied as in the nonmagical world – research, healing, government, law enforcement, education or business. Ultimately it depends on her individual drive, ambition level and willingness to study."
The Professor had spoken the magic words for Hermione – willingness to study. She looked at McGonagall and said earnestly, "I would work very hard, Professor."
Minerva looked at the determination that was steeled on the young girl's face, gave a rare smile and said, "I believe you, Miss Granger."
Dan asked, "What are the costs?"
Minerva said, "All of the information is in the package that I gave you. Tuition, room and board is approximately six thousand pounds for the year. A Hogwarts education runs seven years. Pricing has been very stable for the last fifty years. Term runs September first until the last full week in June. The Christmas holiday break is two weeks and the Easter break is one week. The train will take your daughter from Kings Cross station to Hogsmeade station."
Somewhat apprehensively, Emma asked, "How long do we have to decide?"
"You have until end of term, the 26th of June of next year to reply to your invitation. Fees for the first year are due by the end of July. If you elect to enroll, your daughter will receive access to Diagon Alley in London where she may purchase her school supplies, uniforms, a wand and reading materials. They normally are purchased during the summer holiday." Sensing her eagerness, McGonagall added, "In your daughter's case, she may wish to arrange a visit the book store and get a head start on her reading."
Hermione looked at her with obvious excitement on her face, but didn't say anything. Sensing that they would need some time to consider her offer and review the materials, McGonagall said, "I'll return in two weeks to answer any other questions that you may have. Thank you for your time Drs. Granger. It was good to meet you Miss Granger. Please look over the materials carefully. They should help you in your decision process."
They said their goodbyes and watched in rapt fascination as the conservatively dressed woman stepped out into their back garden and disappeared a moment later.
While they weren't regular drinkers, and it wasn't yet noon, Dan poured them both a tott of Appleton rum.
… -- …
The old witch put the report down after reading it. While she was aware of the conflict that had been mentioned in the most basic of terms, the story of bravery under fire was interesting to her.
She looked at the framed photo that the old scribe had left on her desk. She commented, "You should display this somewhere everyone could see it. The old scribe nodded and thought, 'I did. I have one hanging in the crow's nest.'
The prim witch set the photo next to the other artifacts and inquired, "I assume that you have more on this matter to report. Is that correct?"
McGonagall nodded and stood as the old scribe got up to ride off. He had written Mattd12027. There were also the words Eternal Right.
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