Title: Ultima ratio

Disclaimer: This story is based on characters created and owned by JK Rowling, various publishers including but not limited to Bloomsbury Books, Scholastic Books and Raincoat Books, and Warner Bros., Inc. No money is being made and no copyright or trademark infringement is intended.

Author's note: RR very much appreciated.


"Hermione, come on. You know we are ready." Harry tried to soothe his friend. "This is it! We have to do it now."

"He's right, you know, Hermione." Ron told her while his arm was wrapped comfortingly around her shoulder.

The three friends were currently sitting in what appeared to be a small apartment when in fact it was a magically enhanced tent. Said tent stood in a secluded area in the north of England far from any dwelling, magic or muggle.

"But…but…" Hermione stuttered. "It's tomorrow. He's attacking tomorrow. We can't do this."

She started to panic slightly. She had felt this way ever since they had learned about his plans to attack the ministry. It had been pure coincidence combined with Harry's invisibility cloak that they now held an advantage over the Dark Lord. He was going to attack the heart of the magical community: the Ministry of Magic itself. And if the Ministry fell so would England. And all would lie at the feet of Lord Voldemort. The three friends knew this. And they had to act to prevent that from ever happening. They had worked so hard. Ever since Albus Dumbeldore died at the end of their sixth year at Hogwarts the three friends had lived and fought only for one purpose, to rid the world of Voldemort. And now there was the long awaited opportunity. They knew his plans, they knew he was finally vulnerable. It was time to hit.

"Hermione, " Harry said in a calm voice. "this is our chance. We have to take it."

"I know!" Hermione choked. "I do! But, what if we fail Harry? We know of his plans only since five days. We couldn't take all possible scenarios into account. We are far from ready. I can't do this."

Harry sat down on the couch beside Hermione. Ron was on her other side and still held her in his arm. Harry took one of her hands and held it reassuringly.

"You are right Hermione. It was just five days ago. That's not enough time to set up a plan to take down Voldemort." He paused as if to decide how to best phrase his next words. "But it was not just those five days. It was a lucky stroke that we learned of his attack plan tomorrow. But this whole thing? We planned this for how long now?" Harry asked, then answering himself. "Two years, Hermione! Two years."

He leaned forward and whispered in her ear, "We are ready. Don't worry!" Then Harry let go of her hand and stood up.

Hermione knew he was right. So far their way had been hard and difficult. They had struggled to find and to destroy Voldemort's Horcruxes. They had sacrificed so much but in the end they had succeeded. All of the Horcruxes were gone. The diary, the ring, Slytherin's locket, Ravenclaw's diadem, Huffelpuff's cup and Gryffindor's dagger were now no more than broken trinkets. Just one piece of the Dark Lord's soul remained and that was residing in his body. But that last piece had proven to be very difficult to get. Since his rebirth four years ago Voldemort had grown in power. His army of followers was now strong enough to take over the country. He was just one step away of achieving his goals. Voldemort may not be immortal any more but he still was powerful and dangerous. If he succeeded tomorrow and took down the Ministry he would become the ruler of their country. And then, Horcruxes or not, he would be untouchable.

So ever since Harry had heard of Voldemort's plan to attack he had decided it was time to fulfil the prophecy.