Chapter 5: Back to Class
"Where the bloody hell have you been?" Hermione grilled Harry at breakfast the next morning.
"Last night or for the last year?" he shrugged and relished eating Earth food again. The Great Hall had been rearranged after Snape's 'death', going back to the traditional seating arrangements. The Gryffindors had been up all night waiting for him to come to the tower and were in various states of sleep deprivation and falling asleep at the breakfast table. "Ennervate," he shot the spell at Ron, jolting him awake as he was about to fall face first into his pancakes.
"Both!" she glared at him, wanting to strangle him after finding him alone eating when she arrived for breakfast this morning.
"A couple dozen sectors of space thataway and talking to McGonagall," he pointed up when he said thataway. "God I love bacon," he filled his plate with more and continued eating. "Don't worry so much Hermione, you'll blow a gasket," he laughed before she hit him in the arm. "Go ahead, ask your questions, I'll answer what I can," he shrugged and took a drink of his orange juice.
"Why are you still here? Voldemort has control of everything," she said quietly, expecting Aurors to burst in the doors at any second.
"Had control, I fixed that yesterday," Harry replied before jolting Ron again and conjuring him a cup of coffee. "Drink this," he ordered, handing his friend the cup.
"Thanks mate," Ron yawned and sipped at the steaming mug of coffee.
"What do you mean you fixed it?" she frowned as the other Gryffindors that made their way down listened closely, along with everyone else within earshot.
"I destroyed Azkaban, dumped all the innocent people in the Ministry," he said simply, causing Ron to choke on his drink. "They did most of the work after that, Sirius is Minister by the way," he shrugged. "Oh, then I threw Snape off the Astronomy tower," paused before biting into a waffle dripping with syrup. He ate in a comfortable silence as Hermione just stared at him with her jaw hanging open. "Mmmm, blueberries," he licked his lips and moved onto a muffin.
"You…you…" Hermione stuttered, trying to form thought.
"Put Riddle back in hiding, broke his entire power structure, killed all the Dementors, threw that greasy git off a big honking tower," he rattled things off to her.
"You killed the Dementors?" Ron reacted first. "How?"
"Can't be giving up all my secrets, can I?" Harry joked. "Oh, Wormtail is dead, he threw himself off a cliff instead of being handed over to Remus and Sirius," he mentioned offhandedly.
"Where have you been?" Hermione gathered her thoughts and asked the question again.
"Last night I was talking with McGonagall, Sirius, Remus, and some others about the school and the Ministry, they're probably sleeping it off somewhere," Harry smirked. "I think the four of them killed three bottles of firewhiskey before I left," he laughed when Ron snickered and Hermione hit him. "Now in regards to where I was for the last year or so…" he pointed up.
"You were in the ceiling?" Ron frowned.
"Yes Ron, I was in the ceiling," Harry deadpanned. "No you git, I was a few kilometers away, straight up," he smirked.
"Up in the clouds?" Ron asked confusedly.
"Okay, maybe a few is the wrong term," Harry frowned, grabbing an orange. "Say this is Earth," he tossed the orange up and down and caught it. "Let's just say if this is Earth, to tell you how far away I was…I was as far away from Earth, as this orange is from Neptune," he started peeling the orange. "More or less, I'd have to consult some star charts to get the actual distance and all," he shrugged.
"You were on another planet," Hermione said in shock. "That's impossible…there's…no one's ever found evidence of life…how did you get there?" she muttered to herself before asking her question.
"Got picked up by a ship, met a friend, got a job, came back," he scratched his head. "I probably should have left a note or something, but I thought Sirius was dead, I wasn't really thinking straight that night," he shrugged.
"You got a job?" Ron asked.
"Yeah, good one too, protecting this sector of space from cosmic level threats, protecting life and freedom, like a galactic Auror," he joked as Hermione rolled her eyes. "Try not to think about it too much Hermione, while it's not technically magic per-se, the beings I work for employ a bit of a confundus charm over any area Lanterns are posted, it helps people accept us being there as normal, more or less," he explained. "The only problem is if you think about it too much, you'll get headaches, so just go with the flow," he joked.
"Lanterns?" she asked after rubbing at her head for a minute as the boys talked about Quiddich.
"Oh, that," Harry paused, showing her his ring. "Harry Potter, Green Lantern for sector 2814, at your service," he chuckled. "That was our uniform you saw me in last night, I have it on under my robes, standard operating procedure," he explained.
"So what happens to Voldemort?" she asked.
"Well, I can't really go and kill him without getting my powers taken from me," he frowned. "He was deemed a planetary conflict, so I bent the rules a little when I freed Azkaban since I was ordered to kill the Dementors. Couldn't really leave the people there locked up for no reason, so I freed them and dropped them off at an advantageous place," he smirked.
"Why were you ordered to kill the Dementors?" Hermione frowned.
"Funny thing," Harry pointed at her with a slice of bacon. "Turns out they were aliens," he commented as Ron just stared at them. "Well, not really aliens, not really," he corrected himself. "They were aliens once though, I do remember that, it's just the specifics that get me," he rambled. "Anyway, they were aliens whose planet was caught in a backwash of anti-matter, or something like that, I skimmed the file, didn't bother with any of the science details," he shrugged. "Point is, they were supposed to be killed off eight thousand years ago, so I helped carry out their sentence."
"Hello Harry, Hermione, Ronald," Luna greeted them and took a seat by Hermione across from Ron and Harry. "I got an owl from my father late last night, he was ordered by the Minister of Magic to put out a special edition of the Quibbler this morning for free to all of wizarding England," she explained as she scooped some scrambled eggs onto her plate.
"Sirius is probably reassuring the people, maybe trying to track down Riddle," Hermione reasoned.
"He's passed out in the Room of Requirement sleeping off the firewhiskey," Harry pointed out. "More like he…more like Remus had Shacklebolt take care of it before they came here," Harry corrected himself midsentence.
"Who's Sirius?" Luna asked as she hummed to herself and picked at her food.
"Sirius Black, the Minister of Magic," Hermione said automatically.
"You mean Stubby Boardman?" Luna questioned Hermione.
"Luna…do I even want to know how your father got enough articles for an issue, much less got them printed that fast?" Harry looked down at the table shaking his head, knowing he was not going to like the answer.
"Oh, I wrote them months ago, daddy has had them in the basement waiting for today," she shrugged and continued eating her food.
"How are you still eating?" Hermione watched as Harry continued shoveling food onto his plate. "You've been at it for an hour," she frowned when Harry let out a burp in her direction.
"Growing boy Hermione," he smirked. "And it was two hours, I was down here before you," he pointed out and went back to his food. "And you'll never know how much you miss food like this until you spend a year eating a blue sludge with the consistency of pudding for a year," he pointed his fork at her. "Why do you think the Lanterns spend as much time as possible away from the base? The food there sucks," he joked.
"Mr. Potter," he looked up from his plate when the Headmistress greeted him from behind. "Nice to see you with your friends," she smiled at Hermione, Ron, Luna, Ginny, Neville, and the rest of the Gryffindors that were trying to stay as close to Harry as possible. "I must ask you if you had anything to do with the Slytherins not being able to leave their common room this morning," she watched as he choked back laughter.
"While that is very funny, and I have been enjoying my meal, at least til Parkinson showed up ten minutes ago," he joked. "It wasn't me, you do realize who is passed out in the Room of Requirement, don't you?" he watched her face turn a shade of red.
"Black," she frowned.
"Minister Black, and his special executive assistant Mr. Lupin," Harry grinned.
"You lot get ready for class," she handed them their timetables. "The Aurors will be here to retrieve the Carrows before dinner, will your spells hold until then?" she gestured at the corner of the Great Hall where Harry had stuck the stunned bodies of the siblings to the wall sometime over the night.
"How can they expect us to go to class after all of that?" Ron complained as they moved together down the halls towards the Potions classroom. "Better yet, who is teaching us, Harry threw the greasy git off the Astronomy tower," he frowned.
"I am sure the Ministry has sent someone to fill in temporarily, right Harry?" Hermione pointed out.
"Hell if I know, Sirius was half in the bag when he got here last night," he shrugged as they entered the Potions classroom and stopped to look at the door. "Oh, this ought to be good," he laughed as he poked at the doorway with his wand, to Hermione's confusion.
"What?" Hermione frowned and pulled her wand, examining the door carefully. "What is that?" she frowned, unable to identify the spell.
"It's a modified confundus charm, they got the idea from how I explained people not freaking out when they encounter the Lanterns," Harry explained as the room filled up with students from all four houses who were taking their NEWTs in Potions. "Here, I'll cancel it on you, but we're going to leave it on Ron for now," he frowned and tapped her on the head with his wand. "He'll just go nuts, its better this way," he commented before heading to his seat and pulling out his textbook.
"Good morning students," Snape frowned at Granger's shocked expression. "Potter, if you please, refrain from canceling the charm on anyone else, I do not want this information getting out," he glared at Granger.
"Gotcha Snape," Harry snickered as Hermione recovered and took her seat. "Figure it out yet?" he asked.
"Selective memory charm coupled with confundus to keep it secret?" Hermione frowned as she tried to figure out how the spell was cast. "Harry, he killed…" she stopped.
"I know, I'll explain later, we better pay attention, he looks like he's about to hex us," Harry joked as Hermione scrambled to gather her notebook and quill, avoiding Snape's gaze.
Harry sat on the edge of the Astronomy tower, looking down at the ground below him. "Hey there girl, was wondering when you'd show up," he greeted the snow white owl that landed on his arm and started pecking at him. "Okay okay, I'm sorry," he apologized, pulling a handful of owl treats from the pocket of his robes. Hedwig stared at him before nipping his finger enough to draw blood and eating the treats.
"Guess I deserved that," he smirked before sucking on his finger. "We good now?" he asked the owl who hooted and moved to his shoulder, rubbing her head against his. "Thanks Hedwig, I missed you too," he smiled and petted the owl on her head. "Hard being gone this long, you know," he talked to her. "I won't leave you again girl, you're coming with me next time," he sighed.
"Planning on leaving already Harry?" Luna asked as she moved to sit by him, petting Hedwig.
"Just thinking ahead," Harry shrugged, causing Hedwig to nip at his ear and move to Luna's shoulder. "Sorry girl," he apologized to his owl. "I can't stay here forever Luna, once I finish off Riddle, I'll be going back," he looked up at the stars.
"I know," Luna smiled and played with the owl. "What's it like up there?" she asked after sending Hedwig off into the night.
"It's nice," he shrugged. "Very calm, no one to bother you, no one to tell you what you need to be or do," he sighed deeply. "Only needing to deal with the big problems," he frowned. "I want Voldemort dead, so bad," he shook his head. "But I can't just give up on being a Lantern, it's something bigger, you know?" he rubbed his ring.
"Harry, of course I know," she smiled and gave him a hug. "My kind, we always know, we just can't change things," she leaned against him. "I just wish I could see the things you do, instead of being stuck here," she gripped his hand and looked up into the stars. "McGonagall and the Aurors cut out the wall behind the Carrows, you forgot to show up at dinner to unstick them," she giggled.
"Bloody hell," he swore, rubbing his hand over his face. "Well, she's gonna kill me anyway," he shrugged and rolled back from the edge of the tower and stood, brushing the dust from his robes. "Well, you coming?" he tilted his head, watching Luna.
"Coming where?" she asked, getting up carefully so not to disturb Hedwig.
"You're the seer," he held out his hand, looking up into the sky. "Ready to see my world?" he asked, vanishing his robes, standing in the Green Lantern uniform.
"Of course, I brought my camera even," she smiled, pulling out the small device. "Never try to surprise a seer Harry," she grinned as she took his hand and they rose into the sky surrounded by a sphere of green energy.
A/N: Yup, more updates. I like writing fun stories like this. Trying to decide what to do after this and Super Soldier are finished. I have the promised and apparently anticipated Butcher's Bill sequel to my HP/Punisher x-over, a Sweeney Todd take-off staring James Potter (think I might change it to a Crow story, that seems a LOT more fun), the remake of Unified Theory, and for once, a story that does not feature Harry as the lead…a DM/GW Power Rangers take on the whole Green Ranger storyline from waaaaaaaaaaaaaaay the hell back when I was a kid.